Midland, Michigan - Earlier this morning, Dow shareholders the Adrian Dominican Sisters, also representing PAN North America, Interfaith Center on Corporate Responsibility, and Trillium Asset Management, attempted to share concerns about risks of growing seed and pesticide market control and consolidation, including risks to the entire food system. The Sisters attempted to address social and environmental impacts exposed by the Dow-DuPont merger during the meeting, which was attended by approximately 70 investors and lasted less than 15 minutes.
The entire process was very controlled. No one other than the CEO and the Corporate Secretary were permitted to speak. All attendees were required to submit their cell phones in order to enter, and there was no time for questions and answers. There was not even the briefest explanation of what the merger entails, and no synopsis of its implications.
Margaret Weber, representing the Adrian Dominican Sisters, shared the following statement:
"The Dow-DuPont merger makes the company the largest pesticide and biotechnology company in the U.S. and the world. The merger further exacerbates an already consolidated marketplace that limits innovation and could dramatically drive up prices for farmers and consumers.
With continued climate change and extreme weather events — along with increased pest pressures from trade, resistance and climate-related pest territory expansions — the dwindling number of seed varieties increases risk to farmers.
This merger presents significant potential risk to investors and we are well within our rights to voice concerns yet we were completely shut down in our attempts to ask questions. Dow’s modus operandi at today’s special shareholder meeting disallowed any expression of concern by shareholders, and moved a risky merger forward without pause. It does not bode well for transparency regarding future corporate developments.”