Who Is EGT?
EGT Development (Export Grain Terminal) is a subsidiary joint venture operated by Bunge Ltd., STX Corporation, and ITOCHU. The parent company Bunge Ltd. has 51% majority ownership of EGT, making the company a key target for both pinpointed economic strikes and journalist exposition. Bunge Ltd. is a global market leader for oilseed production and processing, being the top processing company in Brazil and Argentina, the second leading processor in the United States, as well as being a dominant edible oil supplier to European and Canadian consumer markets. An important segment of Bunge Ltd.'s current growth plan is to better connect consumer markets within Asia with Bunge North America's grain production; this is mainly in response to an increasing demand for grain-based animal feed that has risen out of the ongoing industrialization of Asian meat production systems; EGT exists as Bunge's initiating effort to control and operate grain exportation from the United States into these Asian markets. EGT will be operable for the 2011 grain harvest within the United States.
Bunge Ltd. recorded $45.7 billion in revenues and $2.35 billion in profits in 2010, while estimating $97 million needed to pay off 2010 labor claims. Having a history of relatively unstable relationships with union workers at company sites worldwide, it is not surprising that EGT has recently turned to scab labor rather than honoring the ILWU workers. In 2006, UFCW Local 540 workers at an oil packaging plant in Fort Worth, Texas were majorly replaced with non-union workers. In 2007, Bulgarian workers affiliated with the Confederation of Independent Trade Unions in Bulgaria set up daily strikes, picket lines, and plant blockades in response to Bunge's announcement of laying off 80% of the workers. In March 2011, SOMU (an Argentinian shipping workers union) blockaded two soy crushing plants and export terminals for three days in Rosiario, Argentina, targeting terminals run by Bunge who had hired a third party company that utilized non-union workers. Aside from other existing conflicts between Bunge and union w orkers worldwide, the Black Workers Organizing Project in 1998 marched and rallied against Bunge for racist employment practices after two black workers were fired after being assaulted by white co-workers in Tennessee.
EGT and Bunge Ltd. are intimately connected to infractions with labor unions, tax evasion, the corporate/industrial takeover of the food production system, severe environmental and landbase degradation (soybean production is a primary driver for Amazonian deforestation), and the cultural genocide of South American indigenous peoples. EGT and Bunge Ltd. is the 1%. To participate on December 12th and to shutdown the ports is to cut off the flow of capital, the lifeforce, of EGT and Bunge, and other capitalist companies, and to act in the favor of all those exploited by capitalism.