Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Syngenta loses preliminary court battle

About 2,000 farmers, grain handlers and corn exporters have filed lawsuits against Swiss biotechnology company Syngenta now that a federal judge in Kansas has ruled their cases have merit to move forward.

The lawsuits allege Syngenta's introduction of a new genetically-modified corn seed in 2011 interrupted trade with China and harmed the market for U.S. corn by depressing the commodity's price. That cost the U.S. corn industry an estimated $1 billion to $3 billion, reports Canadian Press.

On Sept. 11, U.S. District Judge John Lungstrum denied Syngenta's motion to dismiss the case rejecting the company's argument that it had no duty to protect the farmers and other agribusinesses that handle and trade corn.

A federal court panel decided in December to consolidate all of the Syngenta cases in Lungstrum's court in Kansas City, Kansas.