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Organic Consumers Association

Supreme Court Sides with 'Notorious Patent Bully Monsanto'

For related articles and more information, please visit OCA's Genetic Engineering page and our Millions Against Monsanto page.

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday denied a group of farmers the right to challenge Monsanto's seed patents, a decision critics charge allows the biotech giant's "reign of intimidation" to continue.

The plaintiffs in the suit, Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association (OSGATA) et al v. Monsanto, sought to protect themselves from lawsuits by the corporation for patent infringement should Monsanto's genetically engineered seed contaminate the farmers' crops.

Monsanto has sued over 100 farmers for patent infringement.

Jim Gerritsen, president of lead plaintiff OSGATA, previously explained, "We are not customers of Monsanto. We don't want their seed. We don't want their gene-spliced technology. We don't want their trespass onto our farms. We don't want their contamination of our crops. We don't want to have to defend ourselves from aggressive assertions of patent infringement because Monsanto refuses to keep their pollution on their side of the fence. We want justice."

The farmers' and seed producers' battle to preemptively to protect themselves began in 2011 with a case filed in a federal district court in Manhattan. Then, as we previously reported,

Their case was dismissed in February 2012 by Federal Judge Naomi Buchwald, but attorney Dan Ravicher of the not-for-profit Public Patent Foundation [which is representing the plaintiffs] said, "The District Court erred when it denied the organic seed plaintiffs the right to seek protection from Monsanto's patents."

In July of 2012 the group filed an appeal to reverse the lower court's decision.

In June of 2013, a three-judge panel at the Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit dealt the farmers a blow in dismissing the case.            


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