Doesn't Look Too Good For The Soybean Farmer Vs Monsanto In The USSC

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posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 02:36 PM
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It seems the Justices were all about Monsanto's arguments. They were concerned why a company would spend hundreds of millions of dollars to patent a seed variety it the patent holder exhausts that patent once the seed has been sold.

I know sometimes the judges play devil's advocates and it was curious as to why they even decided to take the case as Monsanto had won in the lower court. I had held out a little hope that maybe just maybe David might slay Goliath. Doesn't look good. However there was another case filed today that I will post on edit in India against Monsanto by 500000 farmers for about 7.7 billion dollars.


WASHINGTON — In a closely watched patent case, Supreme Court justices appeared ready to dash the hopes of an Indiana farmer who claimed the unfettered right to plant the next generation of Monsanto Co.'s genetically modified soybeans.

The justices strongly suggested in oral arguments Tuesday that they would agree with Monsanto that its patent protection covers not just the first planting but also seeds that are generated later from any plantings.

"Why in the world" would any company invest millions of dollars in creating a new seed if a farmer could buy one and freely reproduce it, Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. asked.

Mark Walters, a lawyer representing Indiana farmer Hugh Bowman, argued that a patent holder "exhausts" his rights after selling the product.


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Here is a snippet about the other lawsuit:

Launching a lawsuit against the very company that is responsible for a farmer suicide every 30 minutes, 5 million farmers are now suing Monsanto for as much as 6.2 billion euros (around 7.7 billion US dollars). The reason? As with many other cases, such as the ones that led certain farming regions to be known as the ‘suicide belt’, Monsanto has been reportedly taxing the farmers to financial shambles with ridiculous royalty charges. The farmers state that Monsanto has been unfairly gathering exorbitant profits each year on a global scale from “renewal” seed harvests, which are crops planted using seed from the previous year’s harvest.


Story
edit on 20-2-2013 by GrantedBail because: (no reason given)




posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 02:41 PM
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Skeptical?

Hilarious. It's about time.

Get the Poop, out of our Food.



Edit: These farmers should have not been purchasing these seeds.......... What did they expect, dealing with the Monster?
edit on 20-2-2013 by ThinkingCap because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 02:47 PM
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Why don't the farmers just use seeds that aren't manufactured by Monsanto?

That's the part I'm not understanding.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:06 PM
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Remember that when the Supreme Court hears a case it is for a specific reason and their opinion is to either remand a previous ruling or concur with it. In this case, the about genetically modified soybeans but the patent placed on the seed itself. The farmer is arguing that once they purchase the patented seed, future generations of that crop no longer retain the patent of the first seed. Obviously Monsanto argues the opposite.

This ruling will reverberate through basic patent laws depending on the outcome. For instance, if I patent a self-replicating piece of computer code, does it lose its patent when it replicates itself? Or does a manufacturer that creates and patents a widget only maintain patent protection on the first run?

Of course, here we are speaking to something slightly different and Monsanto is not known to be the best stewards of how their seeds are handled.

I am with Hope here, if you want full freedom to not pay a company for a genetically modified seed (and whatever resistances it may hold), then plant an organic seed and you pay no one for any patents. The farmer in this case will lose and honestly they should. I am not condoning Monsanto's practices but they have developed this product and should be able to expect full patent protection until that seed has exhausted itself through various generations to where it no longer represents the originally modified seed; in other words, so long as it has whatever genetic marker in place, that seed is a patent protected product of Monsanto.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:06 PM
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Originally posted by Hopechest
Why don't the farmers just use seeds that aren't manufactured by Monsanto?

That's the part I'm not understanding.


They do. Problem is, Monsanto's crop is contaminating other farmer's fields. Monsanto runs tests on the other farmer's crops, usually by trespassing, they find Monsanto genes in the crop and they sue the farmer's for everything they got based on patent infringement.

GMO's and big biotech explained here, in a new short film:




posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:12 PM
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reply to post by Hopechest
 


That is a really good question and I have wondered that myself. It does seem that there is a monopoly in this country on corn soy and cotton seed however.

snip>Currently, up to 85 percent of U.S. corn is genetically engineered as are 91 percent of soybeans and 88 percent of cotton (cottonseed oil is often used in food products).snip>

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There is also the problem of cross contamination from gmo farms to organic or non gmo farms.

With the help of a nonprofit called the Public Patent Foundation, organic and other farmers who do not wish to plant GMOs filed a lawsuit against Monsanto, the world's largest seed company and the holder of numerous GMO seed patents. The company is notorious for suing those farmers when their non-GMO crops become contaminated by GMOs growing in nearby fields. And the organic and non-GMO farmers hoped the suit would protect them from any litigation in the event that their crops become contaminated against their knowledge via drifting pollen or cross-pollination from bees. The lawsuit represented over 300,000 farmers, most of whom were represented by the Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association.

www.rodale.com...



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:13 PM
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How do even patent a plant or a seed?
They didn`t invent plants or the seeds the plants create, plant`s have been growing wild long before anyone even set foot on the north american continent.

Even though they may have modified a plant that doesn`t give them the right to patent it because they didnt create anything new and they sure didnt create the original plant.

I just wouldnt buy their plants or seeds, see what good their patented plant does them if nobody buys it.
Just buy seeds for the original plant, you know the plant that they used to do the modifications to, obviously that plant isn`t patented because they were free to modify it.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:19 PM
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Originally posted by Tardacus
How do even patent a plant or a seed?
They didn`t invent plants or the seeds the plants create, plant`s have been growing wild long before anyone even set foot on the north american continent.


Yes they did "create" it. They genetically modified it to be resistent to many different things that a normal soybean doesn't have. Right or wrong, that breed of seed is technically no longer natural and is created in a laboratory.


Even though they may have modified a plant that doesn`t give them the right to patent it because they didnt create anything new and they sure didnt create the original plant.


They did create a new seed.


I just wouldnt buy their plants or seeds, see what good their patented plant does them if nobody buys it.
Just buy seeds for the original plant, you know the plant that they used to do the modifications to, obviously that plant isn`t patented because they were free to modify it.


See above and also note that the heavy inclusion of GM soybean is so prevalent that finding an organic seed is becoming increasingly rarer and rarer.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:20 PM
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Well I'm all for patent protection but if their seeds are accidentally contaminating other seeds and they they are suing for that it seems extremely unfair to the farmers who are for all intents and purposes totally innocent.

I believe I see the issue here now.

Thanks for explaining it.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:29 PM
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Originally posted by ownbestenemy

Originally posted by Tardacus
How do even patent a plant or a seed?
They didn`t invent plants or the seeds the plants create, plant`s have been growing wild long before anyone even set foot on the north american continent.


Yes they did "create" it. They genetically modified it to be resistent to many different things that a normal soybean doesn't have. Right or wrong, that breed of seed is technically no longer natural and is created in a laboratory.


Even though they may have modified a plant that doesn`t give them the right to patent it because they didnt create anything new and they sure didnt create the original plant.


They did create a new seed.


I just wouldnt buy their plants or seeds, see what good their patented plant does them if nobody buys it.
Just buy seeds for the original plant, you know the plant that they used to do the modifications to, obviously that plant isn`t patented because they were free to modify it.


See above and also note that the heavy inclusion of GM soybean is so prevalent that finding an organic seed is becoming increasingly rarer and rarer.


Oh I see what you`re saying but it still sounds fishy to me.
I`m looking at it like this:
If i paint a car a different color and put a bigger engine in it i should be able to patent it it since it is different than the original car and can do different things, like go faster.
If the bulk of the modified patented thing is essentially the same as the non patented thing then you really haven`t created anything new you just modified the performance of an existing thing.

They didn`t create a new plant it`s still a soybean, they just modified the performance of it.


edit on 20-2-2013 by Tardacus because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:31 PM
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reply to post by Hopechest
 


Though this case isn't about cross-contamination; that is a wholly separate fight that Monsanto has won (and I do not agree with). This one is a farmer claiming that the seed he bought (Monsanto's) loses its patent protection on the next generation of crop, claiming that the patent is "exhausted" after its first yield. They [the farmer] will lose and should lose in my opinion.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:31 PM
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I'm going to curse Monsanto. Their corporation will crumble within six months and the people running it will be lose everything.
do my curses work? I guess I will find out.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:36 PM
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reply to post by Hopechest
 


Sometimes I wish we had a judge that would say, "Look, I know there really isn't a law making it illegal for your GMO crops to contaminate non GMO crops. You're guilty because your being ass-hats and just plain dirty."

What Monstanto is doing is nothing sort of ecological warfare. I for one view their cross-polination of non-GMO crops as an enviromental disaster similar to an oil spill.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 03:36 PM
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reply to post by Tardacus
 


In a way your example could be patented; not the paint issue (unless it is a special new type of paint) but if you design a new engine, that would be yours to patent -- even if it was based of a design in production. I do understand what you are saying though, it is a naturally occurring life form so how can they claim a patent; the thing is it is no longer naturally occurring and they haven't claimed patent on the soybean seed itself, but rather their own version of it and that is where the problem lies with regards here and with what others have pointed out with cross-contamination. It is FUBAR.



posted on Feb, 20 2013 @ 06:36 PM
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Originally posted by MystikMushroom
reply to post by Hopechest
 


Sometimes I wish we had a judge that would say, "Look, I know there really isn't a law making it illegal for your GMO crops to contaminate non GMO crops. You're guilty because your being ass-hats and just plain dirty."

What Monstanto is doing is nothing sort of ecological warfare. I for one view their cross-polination of non-GMO crops as an enviromental disaster similar to an oil spill.


Hear hear. That was tried in court though, but Montsanto (and not logic) won. I wish they could go back and repeal decisions like that. It goes against the common good.



posted on Feb, 21 2013 @ 12:12 AM
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Originally posted by aboutface
Hear hear. That was tried in court though, but Montsanto (and not logic) won. I wish they could go back and repeal decisions like that. It goes against the common good.


You can if you can show cause. No court opinion is set in stone and most likely, as in the case of the Supreme Court, they even tell you where you failed in logic and legal standing on the case. Recourse isn't some mystical measure, it is obtainable and needs to be utilized more often in specific manners.



posted on Feb, 21 2013 @ 12:28 AM
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In regards to cross-contamination, such a case hasn't yet been heard but the Supreme Court. In Organic Seed Growers & Trade Association, et al. v. Monsanto, that case was dismissed at the lower district court and such a dismissal can lead to a Supreme Court hearing if those who feel injured or depraved can show cause.

Most cross-contamination issues are handled outside of court in settlement. The latest, Organic Seed Growers & Trade Association, et al. v. Monsanto, is one to watch but I think it didn't make it past the lower courts. Still looking.





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