Tags: monsanto | dupont | patent | case

Monsanto Wins $1 Billion in DuPont Patent Case

Wednesday, 01 August 2012 08:28 PM

Monsanto Co. won a $1 billion jury award in a patent-infringement case against DuPont Co. over seeds for growing herbicide-tolerant soybeans.

A federal court jury of five women and three men deliberated for 45 minutes before deciding against DuPont, ending a four-week trial in St. Louis.

The trial revolved around Monsanto’s patent for making Roundup Ready crops, a technology at the heart of its $13.7 billion in annual revenue. Farmers have embraced the technology because it allows them to kill weeds with Roundup herbicide while leaving crops unscathed.

The companies are the two biggest in the $34 billion commercial seed market, which includes $13.3 billion of genetically modified seeds.

Daniel Turner, a DuPont spokesman, and Kelli Powers, a Monsanto spokeswoman, said they couldn’t immediately comment on the verdict.

Lawyers for St. Louis-based Monsanto argued at the trial that DuPont had no right to make hundreds of lines of soybeans combining the Roundup Ready trait with a similar DuPont technology known as GAT.

DuPont, based in Wilmington, Delaware, countered that Monsanto deceived the government to obtain the patent, rendering it unenforceable.

The case is Monsanto Co. v. E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co., 09-cv-686, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri (St. Louis).

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Wednesday, 01 August 2012 08:28 PM
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