Brazilian Soybean Growers to Sue Monsanto for Royalty Payments - Bloomberg
Brazil’s soybean growers association plans to sue Monsanto Co. (MON)
, the world’s biggest seed company, for charging royalty payments two years after a patent expired, the head of the association known as Aprosoja said.
“We want Monsanto to give back to producers 1.2 billion reais ($606.7 million) of royalties charged incorrectly,” Glauber Silveira told reporters in Brasilia. Monsanto, based in St. Louis, also faces lawsuits from producers in the Brazilian states of Rio Grande
do Sul and Mato Grosso.
Brazil’s Superior Court denied an appeal from Monsanto last week to extend the patent that expired in 2010 for a genetically modified soybean seed called RR1. The company yesterday said that it would suspend RR1 royalties until the case is resolved. Monsanto appealed and is seeking to have the case heard by Brazil’s Supreme Court
US supreme court hears Monsanto soybean patent case | Environment | guardian.co.uk
Here's what happened: Bowman bought seeds from a grain elevator that sold soybeans as grain for animal feed, industrial use, or other non-planting purposes. The elevator contained a lot of "second generation" Roundup Ready seeds—the spawn of original seeds that other farmers had bought and harvested from Monsanto. That's not surprising, since "[Roundup Ready soybeans are] probably the most rapidly adopted technological advance in history," said Seth Waxman, who is representing Monsanto. "The very first Roundup Ready soybean seed was only made in 1996. And it now is grown by more than 90 percent of the 275,000 soybean farms in the United States
The article from The Guardian
answers some of Jolie's questions.
90% of farms use these seeds so the small non-genetically modified seed companies have a great deal of difficulty in competing. The case goes back to 2007 and the farmer did not save his own seeds to plant, he bought seed grain that had been GM. Given the amount of RR seeds it is not surprising that he had GM seeds that he could plant.
Monsanto is no stranger to patent battles: Think Progress reports that the company devotes $10 million per year and 75 staffers to investigating and prosecuting farmers for patent violations. It has also sued more than 400 farmers over the last 13 years for patent infringement.