Founded in 1966, the Park Foundation is “dedicated to the aid and support of education, public broadcasting, environment, and other selected areas of interest to the Park family.” The foundation takes no stance on agricultural biotechnology, however A 2017 Park report indicated that the foundation may refuse to invest in companies that have “significant involvement in the development and commercialization of genetically modified organisms.” The foundation also provides environmental grants beyond it stated goals of protecting drinking water and restricting fossil fuel use “at the Foundation’s initiative.” Many of these donations go to openly anti-pesticide and anti-GMO organizations.
As You Sow, a group dedicated to promoting “environmental and social corporate responsibility,” argued in its 2017 Roundup Revealed report that “the modern industrial food system, which heavily uses herbicide-resistant GE crops, is increasingly understood to be unsustainable.” The group also argued that the herbicide glyphosate is carcinogenic and Monsanto colluded with the EPA “to quash a review of glyphosate to be conducted by the Department of Health and Human Services.” (p 9). Fellow Park Foundation grant recipients Environmental Working Group and Center for Biological Diversity also endorse this interpretation of events, though experts believe glyphosate is safe.
The Park Foundation has contributed $125,000 to the Center for Media and Democracy (CMD), a politically progressive nonprofit run by attorney Lisa Graves. Graves sits on the board of U.S. Right to Know, an organic industry-funded nonprofit that attacks biotech researchers who engage in public science outreach. CMD also collaborated with the anti-GMO group Bioscience Resource Project in 2017 on the Poison Papers Project, an effort to demonstrate that government regulators and the chemical industry worked together to conceal “the extraordinary toxicity of many chemical products.”
Annual Revenue: $14,881,814 (2016)
Total Assets: 330,922,046 (2016)
Major Recipients (total contributions 2012-present)
As you Sow $285,000
Food and Water Watch $255,000
Center for Media and Democracy $125,000
Corporate Accountability International $125,000
Rural Foundation Advancement International $110,000
Environmental Working Group $100,000
Center for Biological Diversity $100,000
Public Citizen $100,000