The Soybean Wars: A Radio Documentary

Soybeans, rows and rows of soybeans all around. In western Paraguay the fields that were once thick rain forests are now soybean plantations. They stretch far into the distance swaying hypnotically back and forth in the wind. This ocean of soy, though, is dotted with small islands — houses, actually, that belong to the subsistence campensinos who once eked out a living farming an array of crops like sugar, cotton, wheat, and maize.

But now there is only industrial harvested soy. And pesticides. Soybeans, of course, have a very good reputation in the West (think tofu and biofuels), but the reality is they have damaging repercussions in developing nations where environmental laws are lax and local populations are exploited by multinational corporations. Right now, this is happening in Paraguay, the world's fastest growing soybean producer. (Soundprint website)

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