Monsanto Lawsuit on Biotech Wheat Joins Suggestions of Foul Play

Image: Monsanto Lawsuit on Biotech Wheat Joins Suggestions of Foul Play

Friday, 07 Jun 2013 08:45 AM

By Ken Mandel

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Monsanto Co. said on Wednesday that it found no traces of its long-discontinued experimental biotech wheat product during testing of commercial wheat seeds in Oregon and Washington, prompting officials for the world's largest seed company to suspect possible foul play.

When illegally produced, gene-altered wheat was discovered growing in an Oregon field – eight years after Monsanto ended its field trials – Japan halted orders of U.S. wheat, Bloomberg reported. South Korean millers also suspended purchases of U.S. white wheat, and the Taiwan Flour Mills Association requested that the U.S. label exports by state of origin.

Urgent: Is Obama Telling the Truth on IRS, Benghazi Scandals?

In a lawsuit filed in a Wichita federal court, a Kansas farmer accused Monsanto of negligently releasing genetically altered wheat seed domestically and harming the market for his crop. Barnes is seeking at least $100,000 in damages. Filed June 3 by Ernest Barnes of Morton County, Kansas, it could the first of many to allege contamination, his lawyers said in a statement.

"Monsanto has failed our nation's wheat farmers," Stephen Sussman, a lawyer for Barnes with Houston-based Sussman Godfrey LLP, said in the statement. "Monsanto knew of the risks its genetically altered wheat posed and failed to protect farmers and their crops from those risks."

Officials for the St. Louis-based Monsanto said they've provided DNA material and an event-specific test to the U.S. Dept. of Agriculture to help determined commercial supplies for any contamination of its genetically created herbicide-resistant wheat known as Roundup Ready. The European Union, Taiwan, Korea and Japan have also received the test upon their request.

Despite ending field trials in 2005, the Roundup Ready trait was found growing in wheat on an Oregon wheat farm in April. The company said Wednesday that it tested 30,000 samples of 50 varieties, or 60 percent of white wheat acres in Oregon and Washington, and found no evidence of its Roundup Ready trait, which Monsanto calls "CP4."

"All varieties are clean of this event in wheat. This is a critical development," said Monsanto Chief Technology Officer Robb Fraley in a conference call with reporters on Wednesday.

Fraley said the company is confident in the validity of this test. He said the testing performed over the last week has led to the belief that the incident is "a random isolated occurrence more consistent with the accidental or purposeful mixing of a small amount of seed during the planting harvesting or during the fallow cycle in an individual field."

Urgent Poll: Is the US Economy Healthy? Is it a Bubble About to Burst Again? Vote Now

"What is going on? This is an important question," Fraley said, while insisting that he wasn't blaming the farmer. "We aren't ruling anything out at this point. We know that the circumstances are highly unusual. We're going to continue to do the research until we get to the answer."

Related stories:

Anger Grows Over Secret 'Monsanto Protection Act'

Protesters across Globe Rally against Monsanto - Moneynews

Kansas Farmer Sues Monsanto over GMO Wheat - Moneynews.com

© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Send me more news as it happens.
 
 
Get me on The Wire
Send me more news as it happens.
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Retype Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Top Stories

Newsmax, Moneynews, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, NewsmaxWorld, NewsmaxHealth, are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved