The HUMAN COST OF AGROCHEMICALS
photo by Pablo Piovano

01

Talía Belén Soroco (14 years) has a congenital malformation. She underwent heart surgery and suffers severe motor problems. Her father Juan and her mother Anita worked in the tobacco fields since they were children and manipulated forbidden pesticides such as Furadan and bromomethane. Soon after the birth of their daughter Talía, they decided to leave the fields and undertake sustainable horticulture.
San Vicente, Province of Misiones, Argentina

01

Ademir Gotin is a 20 years old boy. He suffers severe mental disability. Andrea Gotin, her sister was a healthy girl. When she was eight years old, she inhaled bromomethane and had to be hospitalized. She spent nine days in intensive care. A few hours after inhaling the substance the fever went up, affecting the motor functions of her brain. She needs a kidney transplant and has to undergo dialysis three times a week.
Alicia Baja - Province of Misiones, Argentina

01

Alfredo Ceron worked for nine years spraying agrochemical in soybean fields.
Chemicals caused his nails to fell off. He’s currently suffering for nonalcoholic cirrhosis and three herniated discs. In a year he lost 45 kg.
The medical results show residues of glyphosate, chlorpyrifos, azatrina, 2.4D and cypermethrin in his blood.
Ceran is currently on trial with the labor insurance company for its health condition.
Monte Maíz, Province of Córdoba, Argentina

01

Fabián Tomasi worked many years in an agrochemical spraying company, in charge of loading and pumping. He suffers from severe toxic polyneuropathy and is being treated for a generalised muscular atrophy that keeps him home-bound. He has manipulated agrochemicals without using protective masks or gloves all his life, even if precautions need to be taken. “ I didn’t know that all this could be dangerous for my health” he declared. “Experts told me that chemicals need to be handled with caution, but nobody takes precautions in this area
Basavilbaso, Province of Entre Ríos, Argentina

01

Monica Gabriela Rais (21 years old) suffers from paraplegia and mental retardation. Her mother gave birth to Monica while working in the tobacco farms at the age of 15.
San Vicente, Province of Misiones, Argentina

01

Anita Sosa (2011) can’t walk by herself but she plays dreaming to be a dancer together with her elder sister. Liliana Dworak, mother of both, talked about several highly toxic substances she was exposed to and that complicated her last pregnancy. She had her house spread by the local administration to control dengue.
Napenay, Province of Chaco, Argentina

01

Lucas Techeira is three years old and he was born with ichthyosis, a skin disorder that causes the skin to be dry and cracked. He is locally known as the crystal boy. His father Arnoldo left his job in the tobacco fields when his son was born. 32-year-old Rosana Gaspar, Lucas’s mother, says that she has always manipulated glyphosate at home to use in her vegetable garden.
Colonia Aurora, Province of Misiones, Argentina

01

Since Jesica Sheffer (11) was seven years old, she has been suffering from a tendon malformation that prevents her from standing up straight. In spite of her condition, she practices the art of Chinese embroidery, tends her vegetable garden and occasionally cooks for the whole family. Her mother, Ramona Angélica de Lima, has African origins and she has six children. Ramona and her husband came to the village of Fracrán 30 years ago when very few families were living there. Fracrán is a tobacco producing area with a high incidence of people affected by agrotoxins.
In the Province of Misiones, five in a thousand children are born with myelomeningocele (MMC), a severe malformation of the central nervous system. Children are born with the spinal cord open and left with urinary and fecal incontinence and problems in their lower limbs.
Fracrán, Province of Misiones, Argentina

01

The Gotin family in their daily activities.
Province of Misiones, Argentina

01

Twins Aldo and Maximiliano Barrios (2004) and their mother Elena Alderete (1977) posing on their home street. Both children suffer from a severe congenital microcephaly, one of the illnesses associated with the use of agrochemical in transgenic agriculture. The Barrios twins attend one of the many facilities for disabled people, that are increasing in number considerably year after year.
Roque Sáenz Peña, Province of Chaco, Argentina

01

Edgar Fontanellaz and his family live in Firmat, a little village where all fields are cultivated with GMO soybean. Edgar denounced 30 times to the authorities the multiple fumigations his family was exposed to. He was threaten and shot twice.
Both his sons suffer from hearing loss and Edgar thinks that this is due to the multiple exposure to agrochemicals.
Firmat, Provincia de Santa Fe, Argentina

01

A girl runs across the fields.
Alicia Alta- Misiones, Argentina

01

Monument in the middle of nowhere.
La Leonesa, province of Chaco, Argentina