Farmer Lawsuit Against Syngenta Over China Trade Goes to Trial Today

Associated Press writer Jim Suhr reported today that, “The first of tens of thousands of U.S. lawsuits will go to trial on Monday in Kansas against Swiss agribusiness giant Syngenta over its decision to introduce a genetically engineered corn seed variety to the U.S. market before China approved it for imports.

“The lawsuits allege Syngenta’s move wrecked an increasingly important export market for U.S. corn and resulted in price drops that hurt all producers. Court filings show Syngenta aggressively marketed the seeds even when it knew Chinese approval was going to be a problem.

“Plaintiffs’ experts estimate the economic damage at about $5 billion, though Syngenta denies its actions caused any losses for farmers.”

Mr. Suhr explained that, “Monday’s trial in Kansas City, Kansas, involves four Kansas farmers representing roughly 7,300 farmers from that state, according to William Chaney, an attorney for the plaintiffs. It will mark the first test case. The second, involving about 60,000 cases, goes to trial July 10 in a state court in Minnesota, where Syngenta’s North American seed business is based in suburban Minneapolis. The two cases are meant to provide guidance for how the complex web of litigation in state and federal courts could be resolved.”

This entry was posted in Agriculture Law. Bookmark the permalink. Both comments and trackbacks are currently closed.