Peter Melchett

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WARNING! Sewage sludge is toxic. Food should not be grown in "biosolids." Join the Food Rights Network.

Peter Melchett is also Peter Mond, the fourth Baron Melchett. He is son of the British Steel Corporation Chairman Sir Julian Mond amd was educated at Eton and Cambridge, where he read Law. "He took an MA in criminology at the University of Keele, followed by 18 months at the London School of Economics researching the problems of cannabis addiction. He inherited his title at the age of 25, following the early death of his father who had been boss of the British Steel Corporation. Lord Melchett was then courted by the Labour Party. He became a Whip, a junior minister at the Department of the Environment and a minister of state for Northern Ireland under Jim Callaghan.

"By 1979, he had had enough of what he calls "the lying game" of Westminster politics. Short-termism and the obligations of toeing the party line were suffocating him. He found space to breathe in Greenpeace, first in Japan, then in the UK, taking on his present role in 1989... His father taught him how to preserve hedgerows. The 890-acre Courtyard Farm he inherited is substantially organic and attracts thousands of visitors each year, principally for the flowers and for the wildlife. When he became president of the Ramblers' Association in 1984, he created miles of new footpaths across it..." [1]

He served as the executive director of Greenpeace UK for twelve years (1989-2000) and was replaced by Stephen Tindale. [2] He stood down from the board of Greenpeace International in 2002 "after being criticised for accepting a part-time consultancy with public relations firm Burson-Marsteller, whose clients include the GM food giant Monsanto." [3]

He is a corporate PR consultant on food and environmental issues working with Burson-Marsteller, one of the world's largest PR firms and part of the WPP Group. He is also Policy Director since 2004 for the Soil Association, the UK's main organic food and farming organization.

He works as an environmental consultant late with companies including IKEA, ASDA, Wal-Mart, and Burson-Marsteller itself. He is currently a member of the BBC’s Rural Affairs Committee and the UK Government’s Organic Action Plan Group, and is on the Board of the European Union’s Sixth Framework Programme research project." [1]

Soil Association 2010 Report: Consider Growing Organic Food in Toxic Sewage Sludge

On November 29, 2010, the Soil Association issued a major report authored by Dr. Isobel Tomlinson titled "A rock and a hard place: Peak phosphorus and the threat to our food security." [2]. On page 3 the report advocated that the ban on using toxic sewage sludge for growing organic food be reconsidered. It stated: "In the UK, the majority of treated sewage sludge (biosolids) is returned to land. At present time EU organic regulations prohibit the use of such biosolids due to historical concerns about the toxic effects of heavy metals... Heavy metal levels have declined in recent years, and are now low enough for the organic movement to reconsider allowing treated sewage sludge to be used where it meets strict standards."

Lord Peter Melchett, a consultant to Burson-Marsteller Public Relations, is the Policy Director of the Soil Association. Burson-Marsteller's parent firm, WPP Group, has as a client [3] Carlyle Group, a private corporation whose Synagro subsidiary is the world's largest processor of toxic sewage sludge.

Attached here is the PDF of the Soil Association report of November 29, 2010: [4]


He inherited the title at the age of 23 when his father Sir Julian, who was Chairman of the British Steel Corporation, died of a heart attack in 1973.[5] (Peter's grandfather, Sir Alfred Mond, founded Imperial Chemicals Industry (ICI)). [6]

Peter Melchett was educated at Eton and Cambridge. He was a whip in James Callaghan's Labour Party government in the late seventies, then under-secretary for the Environment before becoming minister of state for northern Ireland - at the height of the policy of 'criminalising' Irish republicans.

Announcing himself sick of the 'lying game' of Westminster politics, Melchett withdrew. [7]. He subsequently worked for the Rambler's Association in 1984. [8]. Melchett was Chair of Greenpeace UK between 1986 and 1988, a member of the International Board in 1988 and 2001, and Chair of the Board of Greenpeace Japan from 1995 to 2001. He was Executive Director of Greenpeace UK between 1989 to 2000. [9]

Himself the owner of an 890-acre farm, Lord Melchett was arrested and charged in July 1999 with theft and criminal damage for participating in a civil disobedience protested in which part of a government-sponsored field trial of genetically modified maize was uprooted.[10] [11] The following year he and the other protesters were acquitted.[12]

In January 2002 it was revealed that Melchett had accepted a position with corporate social responsibility practice of the global PR company Burson-Marsteller.

Melchett is listed with the public speaking agency JLA as being available for presentations on "food and farming issues, including genetic engineering, and the role of NGOs".[13] His speaking fees are listed as being in the range of £1k to £2.5k.

Melchett's Work for Burson Marsteller

See: Burson-Marsteller Hires a Green 'Cash Cow', which reads in part:

On January 8, 2002, the Guardian of London reported the latest defection: Lord Peter Melchett, the former head of Greenpeace UK who led civil disobedience actions opposing genetically modified (GM) foods. "Lord Melchett . . . startled former colleagues yesterday by announcing he had taken a job at a PR company which has represented Monsanto and the European biotech industry," the Guardian reported. "The former Labour minister and farmer, who is on the board of Greenpeace International, is to become a consultant for Burson-Marsteller. . . . Burson-Marsteller is the company that governments with poor human rights records and corporations in trouble with environmentalists have turned to when in crisis."

External links

  • BBC Peter Melchett: Lord of the Greens, organizational web page, accessed August 30, 2012.
  • greenpeace Greenpeace to appoint Stephen Tindale as next Executive Director in UK, organizational web page, accessed August 30, 2012.
  • BBC Melchett forced off Greenpeace board, organizational web page, accessed August 30, 2012.