Sidenote: Hope you're finding this useful? I have always been curious about this matter. And when I found very little quality information about it, I decided to share a part of what I've learned about it - which is why this article came to be written. Read on.
The Bird Flu is marching on and becoming an increasing threat as the H5N1 human strain is in Africa causing issues now. Producing enough vaccine fast enough just is not an option if the strain evolves of mutates to flow quickly like Influenza from human to human. One recent article in the Boston Globe accuses Rouche Pharmaceuticals of predatory price strategies for buying up all the Star Anise Fruit Crop a potential component of the TamiFlu vaccine.
If we enlist our Federal Trade Commission to go after them for anti-trust violations when the governments, EU and World Wide Patent laws created this situation in the first place then we put all businesses at a catch 22; in that why bother producing if you are simply going to be attacked? Why make a vaccine in huge quantities? Simply make enough for your self, let the peanut gallery go die of Bird Flu or whatever and screw it? Because this is what will happen if you attack Rouche.
Buying 2 Billion in stockpile for a Bird Flu, which may never come is a power play of which the anti-trust issues the article brings up do not address. If we do not buy some of Rouches products, then the EU will buy less from Boeing, Ford, GE, Wal-Mart and Microsoft. And if you look at the bigger picture we see problems all over the World as Japan attacks Intel Corp and the EU claims Boeing is being subsidized by the US Military even though the airline division is a separate division and we claim that Airbus is being subsidized, which it is by their nations to provide jobs and economic base there too.
The fact is Rouche is a huge player and Bird Flu is the reason to buy from them. I did not see our Big Pharma in the US doing research there to sell vaccines, remember it was all we could do to get them to work on the Anthrax Vaccines. We should not be automatically condemning Rouche for shoring up its supply chain in advance of need for components to make up the tamiflu vaccine, nor should we inhibit free-enterprise from solving the problems which plague mankind. So consider all this in 2006.
Lance Winslow - Online Think Tank forum board. If you have innovative thoughts and unique perspectives, come think with Lance; www.WorldThinkTank.net/wttbbs/