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Monsanto vs. US Farmers
January 15, 2005 11:32 AM   Subscribe

Farmer Homer McFarland is being sued for hundreds of thousands of dollars by the Monsanto corporation. His crime? Replanting his crops' own seed, as farmers have done for millennia, which violates the biotech giant's intellectual property rights, the company claims. Quietly, Monsanto's aggressive "seed police" have been suing farmers in 25 states for years, often settling out of court for huge sums, according to the Center for Food Safety's new report, Monsanto vs. US farmers [PDF link]. For more information, also see a new documentary called The Future of Food.
posted by digaman (55 comments total)

 
I am aghast at farmers being sued for not fulfilling the contractual obligations they signed up for. The nerve of big business. I shall write my congressman immediately.
posted by cillit bang at 11:39 AM on January 15, 2005


These farmer scofflaws should be taken out and beaten by the monstanto police. The nerve of some of these people replanting their own crops. I say we let Monsanto kill 'em all as a deterent to anyone else who might try to screw with the powerful overlord that is Monsanto and The Mighty Seed Squad.

All Hail Monsanto!
posted by damnitkage at 11:47 AM on January 15, 2005


Monsanto has a point. In fact, to help them out, we should avoid buying any of their produce, which would remove the incentive of the farmers to use Monsanto's products in the first place.
posted by SPrintF at 11:55 AM on January 15, 2005


Great post. The film The Corporation explores this in some depth.
posted by orange clock at 12:05 PM on January 15, 2005


You know, it's not just that they're suing, it's the tactics involved. Sometimes it looks more like racketeering. It's not like they take any real efforts to keep their crops from contaminating non-GM crops, either. Just wait for it to mix with standard crop naturally, then sue. Hell, sometimes they sue even when roundup ready seed isn't used.
posted by absalom at 12:08 PM on January 15, 2005


It would be sweet if they could somehow weave the DMCA into this saga.
posted by RockCorpse at 12:08 PM on January 15, 2005


Can you bittorrent a seed?
posted by wendell at 12:14 PM on January 15, 2005


No but you can seed a torrent.
posted by nathan_teske at 12:23 PM on January 15, 2005


Guess what? Now we're spreading the genetically-engineered, non-replantable goodness to the cradle of the agricultural revolution:
The US military is now providing free wheat seed to Iraqi farmers--434 tons of it so far. Sounds like a public relations victory on the surface... but then listen to this comment from Army public affairs:

"Iraq's wheat seed has been degraded tremendously because the farmers harvest their grain and then use the same wheat to replant," Acree said...

Ahh! The catch: it's F1 hybrid seed that they're giving away--does not produce a fertile product. In other words, they can't replant it and grow more wheat next year. So... now they're dependent on more free wheat seed next year. How long will it be before they have to pay Archer Daniels Midland market price for their newfound habit? This is just one more example of the commodification of sustainable peasant agriculture, and the tendency of hierarchy to continually intensify by creating dependency.
posted by Artifice_Eternity at 1:33 PM on January 15, 2005


Amazing story, A_E. Thanks for a post that contributes to the dialogue.
posted by digaman at 1:43 PM on January 15, 2005


Dinosaurs: Meteor fallout.
Dodo: Too cute for its own good.
Kakapo: Mating call's pitch was so deep that females could not find the male.
Humanity: After narrowly escaping nuclear annihilation, replaced its food source with a nonreproducable variant."
posted by NickDouglas at 1:46 PM on January 15, 2005


Thanks, A_E.
posted by Bugbread at 1:58 PM on January 15, 2005


A while back Monsanto received a lot of negative publicity because of the so-call "terminator" gene inserted in their crops, which would have made it impossible to re-seed from year to year. Indian farmers were so worried at the effects of poorly-performing GE crops that they were commiting suicide in large numbers.Under massive international pressure, Monsanto backed down.

Looks like they've done the smart thing and simply used intellectual property laws instead of technology.
posted by Infinite Jest at 2:02 PM on January 15, 2005


wait...you mean food comes out of the ground?
posted by es_de_bah at 2:12 PM on January 15, 2005


Uhhh, look, when you make a contract which says "I will license you some technology and you will give me some money, however, the money you are giving me only covers you using the technology the way I ask you to" and then you turn around and do the exact opposite, you're an asshole.

That farmer is in need of learning a big lesson about life. When you make an agreement, you stick to your word. If you wanted to replant, and you were told no, then you needed to either:

(a) Suck it up and live with it
(b) Renegotiate

You don't get option:

(c) Accept the agreement you don't like and welch at your first opportunity.

Next thing you know you'll all say "I only gave a few copies of windows XP to my friends, what's wrong with that? I bought the first one!"

Get real.

Now, in the cases where Monsantos GM crops have managed to accidentally seed the crops of people who have not paid for any license, *then*, and only *then* am I behind the farmer. They didn't ask for it, and Monsanto were stupid to let it happen.
posted by shepd at 2:51 PM on January 15, 2005


It's always a good idea to read contracts before you sign them.
posted by angry modem at 2:56 PM on January 15, 2005


Well thank God they didn't buy their Monsanto seed at Wal-Mart.
posted by Steve_at_Linnwood at 3:13 PM on January 15, 2005


Should the farmer have breached the contract? No. Should Monsanto have a little concern beyond their own bottom line and genetically modified seed? Yes. Do they have to care about anything but their bottom line? Nope.

Monsanto should be behaving differently and working to create a viable and renewable crop but that would hurt their shareholders so they have to protect their product at all costs.

And, since I disapprove of their practices, I will be making my purchases at stores that do not sell Monsanto brand produce.

And yes, angry modem, read the contracts, they put some damned strange stuff in them from time to time just to see if people notice.
posted by fenriq at 3:25 PM on January 15, 2005


Monsanto were stupid to let it happen.

Worse than stupid, shepd, because only God could prevent such cross-pollinizations from occurring, considering the fact that the entire ecosystem of the planet is designed to expedite them.

Monsanto is depending on people focusing on the contractual issues, just as you have, and ignoring the larger issue of whether or not IP rights can function in fecund wild systems as they function in, say, your office.
posted by digaman at 3:25 PM on January 15, 2005


Genetically Modified Food Bad. We aren't even talking about the health or environmental consequences. All we are talking about is that the User Agreement sucks. This is the equivalent of buying a copy of Word to write a book and then finding somewhere in the fine print that only people who own Word are allowed to read the published book.
posted by ilsa at 3:54 PM on January 15, 2005


I thought I read this here on mefi, but I guess I didn't. The big thing that's being missed here is that while they may have done so for millennia, modern farmers don't plant from their own seed.

It's not like this farmer did what he does every year and forgot that Monsanto told him he couldn't. He went to quite a bit of effort to avoid having to buy more seed from Monsanto, where in any other situation a large-scale farmer would've just bought from his usual supplier.
posted by mendel at 4:01 PM on January 15, 2005


Hey, okay, fair enough, he was in a contract. But that itself should set alarm-bells ringing. It's a strange and unusual twist for agriculture for farmers to have to sign a contract defining how they're going to use the seed they buy, especially when the contents of that contract contradict simple plant reproductive and genetic functioning.

An few strange analogies, shepd - what if Windows XP was designed (as plants are) to spontaneously burn copies of itself whenever you put a blank CD-R in the drive? Wouldn't it seem a little unfair and illogical if Microsoft then went after you for possessing "pirate copies"?

And in the case of non-viable hybrid seed...what if Windows XP was designed to shut down and erase itself once a year, and you had to buy a new copy each year at full price? Would a company operating on those principals deserve any market share?

As others have said, in terms of the letter of the contract, Monsanto may well be the good guys in all these disputes. But in terms of the moral responsibilities and biological realities, they're on a slippery slope.
posted by Jimbob at 4:02 PM on January 15, 2005


This is like getting infected with spyware, then the spyware companies suing because your software is on their machine and you didn't pay for it.

Monsanto contaminated his crop. So it was a "genetically modified seed." Big deal; he could make the argument that he now can't sell the crop as "non-GM" and thus won't make as much money off of it. In many circles, organic is the superior product. I believe this ended up being his countersuit, and it's hard to argue with. Unless, of course, you're not Monsanto.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 4:04 PM on January 15, 2005


Well duh.
What were you expecting in the age of Cheney and Bush?

Monsanto is currently very busy tieing up all the Iraqi farmers with "free" seed stock.
posted by Fupped Duck at 4:05 PM on January 15, 2005


He went to quite a bit of effort to avoid having to buy more seed from Monsanto, where in any other situation a large-scale farmer would've just bought from his usual supplier.

Fair enough, but in viable crops there's always a percentage of seed which does fall off, hang around, and contribute to the next generation of plants, in that paddock, or the one next door. And Montanto have, in cases other than this one, been vigorously prosecuting accidental and unavoidable escape of their "genetic property" through this means.
posted by Jimbob at 4:05 PM on January 15, 2005


On one hand, the farmer DID sign a contract with Monsanto that said he was not going to replant the seed, as they would not have sold it to him otherwise. So he basically lied to them and broke the contract. Just because replanting seed is legal doesn't make that ok, since Monsanto is fully with their rights to ask for a contract before they sell their product, and fully within their rights to ask consumers to give up legal rights within said contract (which is a major functions of contracts, in general.) If the farmer didn't like it, he could have gotten his seed elsewhere. It's common knowledge that Monsanto requires you not reseed before they will sell to you.

On the other hand, I think Monsanto should only retain intellectual control over their products only as long as they retain physical control, so if their engineered genes escape into nature to contaminate the biosphere, other companies should be able to use this 'wild' stock to produce seed.
posted by Mitrovarr at 4:07 PM on January 15, 2005


I think Monsanto should only retain intellectual control over their products only as long as they retain physical control, so if their engineered genes escape into nature to contaminate the biosphere, other companies should be able to use this 'wild' stock to produce seed.

That's really not a bad idea. You snooze, you lose. It's the only biologically workable solution. Now, to get that bill passed...
posted by Jimbob at 4:09 PM on January 15, 2005


C_D: Monsanto contaminated his crop. So it was a "genetically modified seed."

Hold on, which link are you discussing? Because the first link, which is what I thought we were all discussing, is not about crosscontamination. He bought the seed directly from Monsanto.
posted by Bugbread at 4:16 PM on January 15, 2005


Well, as I say, how on Earth could Monsanto retain "physical control" of the proprietary genes once they're introduced into the ecosystem at large, which is designed to spread and intermingle genes far and wide?

If Microsoft published their source code on non-password-protected Web sites, and then initiated hundreds of major lawsuits against users who possessed freeware that contained a line or two of this code here and there, they would be a global laughingstock. That's Monsanto's position re: suing farmers over crops "contaminated" with their intellectual property as described in the PDF link in the main post.
posted by digaman at 4:30 PM on January 15, 2005


It's a strange and unusual twist for agriculture for farmers to have to sign a contract defining how they're going to use the seed they buy

Why on earth is it strange and unusual? It's a business purchasing things from another business. It's no more strange and unusual than companies having to sign a contract defining how they're going to use the software they buy. Sure, there are people who think that software should be inherently free and libre, but that's not how the industry is.

These aren't the farmers from children's books. A 5000-acre farm is a heavily-automated industrial operation. The Yahoo News story calls it a "family farm", but a farm that size will be dealing with revenues in the millions. At that size you have company accountants and lawyers on hand, so you don't sign a contract with a multinational without reading it over. The farm's subsidies can give you an idea of the scale of operations (just under a million over eight years).

This particular farmer decided that using Roundup and Roundup-Ready seed could make him more money. That's a business decision: trading off paying more for seed and not being able to replant if you wanted to in exchange for significantly lowered staffing costs and significantly higher yield. Roundup and roundup-ready crops work, if that's your business. All of your competitors are required to foot the bill for seed every year, so why should this guy get a leg up on everyone else?

Business is business -- there's nothing particularly small-town romantic about a 5000-acre farm. His lawyers OK'd the contract; if he wanted to collect and replant, either he has an issue with his lawyer, or he's deliberately trying to have his cake and eat it too.

Incidentally, I think that the crosscontamination issue is nowhere near as clear-cut as this one and that Monsanto is heavy-handed, but that's not this issue.
posted by mendel at 4:42 PM on January 15, 2005


Actually, that's not even close to the ridiculous of Monsanto's position. It's more like if Microsoft put code into Outlook that occasionally sent snippets of Outlook's source code to random email addresses, and then sued folks who received the source code.

And thanks, digaman, for pointing out that the contamination was in the PDF link (the one I haven't checked because the work computer is bad at PDF files). I was under the wrong impression that the farmer being referenced was the one in the first link.

On preview: Mendel, it looks like there are two issues being discussed, Link #1, about a farmer intentionally breaching contract, and Link #3 (PDF), about crosscontamination.

It would probably be better for the discussion if people pointed out which of the issues they were addressing when using phrases like "the farmer".
posted by Bugbread at 4:46 PM on January 15, 2005


Business is business -- there's nothing particularly small-town romantic about a 5000-acre farm. His lawyers OK'd the contract; if he wanted to collect and replant, either he has an issue with his lawyer, or he's deliberately trying to have his cake and eat it too.

Perhaps, but someone has been put in prison for several years over this. I'm a bit worried when contractual issues - what were traditionally civil matters in the courts - become criminal. IP should remain in the realm of civil law, though modern companies who trade in IP like Mansanto, and organizations like the RIAA and MPAA disagree. And when they throw their weight around we end up with laws like the DMCA, though the precedent is not a good one.
posted by krinklyfig at 4:58 PM on January 15, 2005


bugbread: ah, thanks. Didn't want to bother with PDF, and it didn't occur to me that both issues had come up because everywhere else I've seen the seed collection issue discussed, it got conflated with the cross-contamination issue!

So, farmers should just stop using Roundup, right?
posted by mendel at 5:07 PM on January 15, 2005


krinklyfig: From what I can find, Kem Ralph's case went from civil to criminal when he lied in court and burned a truckload of seed in defiance of a court order. Nothing specific to Monsanto or farming there, just plain old bad judgment. Before he lied in court and destroyed evidence, his was a civil breach-of-contract case too.
posted by mendel at 5:15 PM on January 15, 2005


What were you expecting in the age of Cheney and Bush?

The worst of Monsanto's tactics occurred under Clinton. What do you expect in the age of a lying philandering President? You can create a non-sensical snark in any direction. It's easy.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 5:18 PM on January 15, 2005


krinklyfig: From what I can find, Kem Ralph's case went from civil to criminal when he lied in court and burned a truckload of seed in defiance of a court order. Nothing specific to Monsanto or farming there, just plain old bad judgment. Before he lied in court and destroyed evidence, his was a civil breach-of-contract case too.

OK, fair enough. But eight years in prison and $1.7 million? I find it hard to fathom that his actions would result in such a penalty. I'll have to look into it. In any case, it was a bad example of what I was talking about.
posted by krinklyfig at 5:26 PM on January 15, 2005


For all the comments here criticizing Monsanto for acting like almost any other large modern corporation, why would you expect them to do anything different? How many threads have we had over the years on Wal-Mart, Microsoft, Haliburton, banks, investment companies and so forth, with most MeFites expressing similar opinions to those in this thread? The plain truth is that capitalism as practiced under modern American, European, Japanese, WTO, etc. law rewards those companies for such behavior and causes them to seek additional legal changes (DCMA, flag of convenience incorporation, social security pritization) to reinforce and further reward executives and shareholders.
posted by billsaysthis at 5:45 PM on January 15, 2005


Hold on, which link are you discussing? Because the first link, which is what I thought we were all discussing, is not about crosscontamination. He bought the seed directly from Monsanto.

My mistake--I saw that aspect of the article but in my haste thought it was talking about a different case. In this case, I redact my previous objection. A contract's a contract, and he understood full well that he was breaking the terms of the contract when he tried to hide the seeds. That element of deception would pretty much nullify any "whoops" argument.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 5:49 PM on January 15, 2005


The ground-up corpses of Monsanto executives would make superb fertilizer, I reckon.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:56 PM on January 15, 2005


No, too much shit is just as bad for the soil as too little.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 6:06 PM on January 15, 2005


I bought a copy of Future of Food and highly recommend anyone interested in learning about why Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) are such a hot topic of debate. Many countries outright ban them. Before I saw this film I was on the fence, now I am strongly against GMOs. The film is one-sided and doesn't try to present a Documentary style balanced view, but frankly, it does not need to, it's like saying there is a good side to pollution.

Also this film is better the The Corporation, which was IMO politically slanted to socialism, although it makes some excellent criticisms of capitalism.
posted by stbalbach at 9:30 PM on January 15, 2005


I can't find a link right now, but Monsanto also pursued action against a farmer on whose land a Monstanto crop grew -- because seed had blown in from a neighboring farm and germinated. This guy didn't actually plant the seeds. They just happened to sprout on his land.

Yeah, maybe there was a contract that was violated. But, Monsanto is Evil Corporation incarnate. I'm always on the other guy's side.
posted by mudpuppie at 10:16 PM on January 15, 2005


Monsanto is Evil Corporation incarnate

Obviously you haven't read their website, which clearly shows that they are a happy and fuzzy planet-and-people-loving club of fuzzy environmentalists. I thought this was a gem:

Earning that reputation means more than observing the letter of the law. It means doing what is right even when we are faced with situations not governed by any specific law or regulation. Sometimes the right thing to do is not clear, but at Monsanto our job is to seek and find the right answer in every business situation...
posted by rhruska at 10:55 PM on January 15, 2005


Monsanto's decisions in this area strike me as being "penny wise and pound foolish." They are enforcing their patents and contracts against farmers who knew they were in effect stealing - fine. However, they have become so aggressive in this that they are turning many farmers against them. Their aggression on the cross-contamination issue appears especially egregious. When new, competing and equivalent options become available to these farmers they will be most motivated to avoid Monsanto. The technology itself will also hurt Monsanto as the gene for Roundup resistance seems to be crossing over into ragweed and perhaps other weeds thus making Roundup a less attractive herbicide.
posted by caddis at 12:40 AM on January 16, 2005


I can't find a link right now, but Monsanto also pursued action against a farmer on whose land a Monstanto crop grew

Um, mudpuppie... four comments above yours.
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 2:39 AM on January 16, 2005


a happy and fuzzy planet-and-people-loving club of fuzzy environmentalists.

Where do I sign up?

But seriously-- the happiest, most optimistic guy I know worked at Monsanto for decades. He is a liberal environmentalist outdoorsman sort. He's so bright and shiny you'd expect him to have been building houses for the homeless for the past twenty years instead of helping to poison the planet. I don't understand how he rationalizes his life and beliefs with what he used to do for a living... I don't understand this about a lot of people and their jobs.
posted by Fuzzy Monster at 6:58 AM on January 16, 2005


Fuzzy Monster, the yield of proprietary seeds using modern cultivation methods vastly exceeds the yield of non-proprietary seeds . By virtually any metric of resources and input (acreage, labor, water, money, etc.) more food is being produced for less cost.

This efficiency is the reason why, despite high labor costs and land costs, the U.S. is a net exporter of basic agricultural commodities, while it is a net importer of virtually every other kind of manufactured/built/cultivated good you could name.

Now, if you happen to believe that more food cheaper is actually a problem (causing obesity, diabetes, etc.), you might not like this. If you believe that the application of pesticides and herbicides (which are key to modern cultivation methods) is inherently unsafe, you definitely won't like it.

Most people working for Monsanto take neither view, and thus can have entirely clean consciences about their work.
posted by MattD at 2:45 PM on January 16, 2005


The fact that there is an argument about this is clear evidence that many of humanity's conceptual values are so skewed as to actually be insane.

All of you who are arguing that Monsanto is in the right on this are as insane as the system that is allowing them to do this. You are, of course, legally correct, but that doesn't change the fact that the "business model" that Monsanto is enforcing is insane.

We are talking about food, staple food that everyone on earth eats, food that we all need to survive. You who defend Monsanto in this are defending control of humanity's food supply by predatory corporations whose only responsibility by law (American law anyway) is to make as much money as possible for their shareholders providing their actions are within established laws of the nation-states in which they do business.

And of course, they use those laws to their advantage. And manipulate them, and use their money leverage to get laws passed in favor of them, to legislate whatever business practice they choose into legality, like the DMCA as mentioned above. In fact, if it is possible to make maximum profits by starving people to death, the corporation is obligated to try to do that, and to make it legal to do that.

That, plain and simple, is outright insanity. Wrangle all the legal terms you want; we're talking about feeding people and the ability to produce food. When legal technicalities are more important to you than human survival, you are seriously twisted, anti-human and perhaps even psychotic.

Have fun!
posted by zoogleplex at 6:27 PM on January 16, 2005


Not quite. We're saying "Monsanto is evil, so don't buy your fucking grain from them!!" It's not so much defending Monsanto as chastising the incredibly stupid.
posted by Bugbread at 8:34 PM on January 16, 2005


Zoogleplex, my question (which was the comment containing the DCMA reference) asked why you expect Monsanto, Wal-Mart and so forth to act differently, not whether they ought to act differently or if the system allowing to act as they do should be changed. My personal preference would be to change the system to incent corporations to act in just the ways you would prefer but I see little political will in this country to accomplish it.

If I could make one change to our legal system, it would be to reverse the 1880s Supreme Court decision that birthed the corporations are legal persons fiction and all of its legal children. Corporations are not people, they employ people and are owned by people, and should not have the same rights as people.
posted by billsaysthis at 10:35 PM on January 16, 2005


Wow, zoogleplex brings out the old appeal to emotion while missing some key points.

You are, of course, legally correct

Given that this link is about a lawsuit, the contract terms are the issue.


We are talking about food, staple food that everyone on earth eats, food that we all need to survive.

...

we're talking about feeding people and the ability to produce food. When legal technicalities are more important to you than human survival, you are seriously twisted... [remaining ad hominem snipped]



Dear fellow, humankind has been raising crops for thousands of years. Certainly a long time before Monsanto came along. All those wonderful farmers that grow food for the rest of us can continue to use the same old seeds and resources that our species has been using for millenia. Monsanto is in the business of creating new varieties of "super seeds" that increase the yield and reduce the cost of farming. That's how they make money.

But guess what? There's no gun to your head forcing you to buy anything from them. If all farmers in USA decided today to not buy a single seed from Monsanto, you'd put them out of business. And that's indeed how capitalism works. Don't like them? Don't buy their products and they may either go under or change the way they work.

But please don't make it sound as if Monsanto's seeds hold the key to feeding us all. We've been managing fine before they came along. We can continue to do the same without them. They haven't taken away your "ability to feed people"

...corporations whose only responsibility by law (American law anyway) is to make as much money as possible for their shareholders providing their actions are within established laws of the nation-states in which they do business

And this goal is different from the goals of all other businesses in the world how exactly? Isn't that the goal of a for-profit business? To generate - gasp! - profits?

(And incidentally, those nice farmers that feed us all are using these seeds so they can get higher yields at lower costs so they can make more money. More money? Yes, to "make as much money as possible for their shareholders." Damn those evil farmers and their thousands of acres of land!)
posted by madman at 12:07 AM on January 17, 2005


billsaysthis: I agree with you about that 1880's court decision. But it's a bit late to fix...

madman: You're correct on all your points. I was not trying to insert a persuasive argument or really counter anyone's points above; I'm just expressing my opinion that allowing this sort of thing to happen to things like food production, fresh water, and medical services is sheer folly on the part of the people. But it's happening anyway.

When you say "And this goal is different from the goals of all other businesses in the world how exactly? Isn't that the goal of a for-profit business? To generate - gasp! - profits?" you are absolutely right. But there is a point beyond which generating more and more financial profits has a diminishing return in "non-financial profits" for everyone. Blind pursuit of profits has consequences, many of which are not apparent right away - like pollution, global climate change, and cross-pollination of GM crops with "natural" crops, for example.

"They haven't taken away your "ability to feed people" - perhaps not technically, but it could be argued that in a practical sense, because of the way agriculture has been industrialized to the fullest extent possible, that there is no other practical alternative to the business method and practices inherent to industrial agriculture.

You're not going to see the massive farms which currently dominate American grain production get cut up into smaller plots that are tilled by single families of farmers, for example. It doesn't make economic sense at this current time. In a way, Monsanto's seeds very much ARE the key to feeding us all - at least, feeding us all at the price levels we've become accustomed to.

I'm not blind to the realities of the situation; I just think the situation is becoming nonsensical for human survival. And that Monsanto's position, though quite legal and understandable in the Continual World Economic Growth via Corporate Expansion and Domination paradigm, is inherently destructive to humanity - though not visibly at this particular time.
posted by zoogleplex at 11:09 AM on January 17, 2005


The story Civil Disobediant links to is much more outrageous than the 1st link in this post. That guy never even planted Monsanto grain, it contaminated his crop and Monsanto sued him. That's messed up. If you signed a contract with them, that's one thing. Stupid you for violating that contract.
But how are you supposed to protect your field from being polluted with someone else's seed?
posted by raedyn at 3:09 PM on January 17, 2005


The Schmeiser case opens up the interesting possibility of joe-jobbing farmers.
posted by sonofsamiam at 3:21 PM on January 17, 2005


Zoogleplex, I don't know that you're correct about it being too late to change that decision and its afterbirth, you might be, though to shortcut things I will repeat my response from the AskMe epiphany thread: Do self-aware species inevitably self-destruct?
posted by billsaysthis at 6:03 PM on January 17, 2005


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