QWhy do Biotech Companies feel the need to sue farmers and Crop growers for not using their Gmo Seeds..

Why do Biotech Companies feel the need to sue farmers and Crop growers for not using their Gmo Seeds..

AExpert Answer

None of our member companies have ever sued a farmer for not using GM seeds. In fact, one of our core principles is, “Respecting farmers’ rights to choose the seeds that are best for their farms, businesses and communities,” whether they choose GM seeds or non-GM seeds.


We have no intention of suing farmers for any reason so long as they abide by the terms of the usage agreements. André Roef, Head of Law, Patents & Compliance Seeds, Bayer, has addressed this topic in a previous response; an excerpt is included below:


Lawsuits generated by biotech companies against farmers mostly center around patent protection issues. Patents are sought to protect intellectual property rights and are a compensation for the investments in time, work and resources to develop new technologies. Patents, in addition to plant protection certificates,  have been available on seeds and plants in certain countries, such as the United States and Australia, provided that the legal criteria for patentability are met.  Biotech companies sometimes file suit against farmers who intentionally breach their contracts and infringe the patent rights of such companies. However litigation is always a last resort.


Lawsuits against biotech companies initiated by farmers generally involve product claims (e.g. non-performance of the seed under extreme weather conditions) or damage claims because traces of unapproved genetically engineered traits were inadvertently found in their crops.


The full response is available here. If you have any additional questions, please ask.

Posted on February 28, 2018
It all depends on who ‘we’ is. If ‘we’ is referring to farmers, then the answer is definitely making money. In 2014, one analysis of this issue examined the results of 147 studies on the economic impacts of GM crops, finding that on average, farmer profits rose by 68 percent. This assessment included studies of large GM crop production in countries such as the USA, Brazil and Argentina, but also small landholders with less than five acres of land in India, China and... Read More
Posted on March 9, 2018
Thanks for the question. I believe you are asking about how corn hybrids are produced. For starters, corn plants have both female (silks and cobs) and male parts (tassels). This means that in a field of corn, any plant can fertilize any other plant (hybrid), including itself (inbred).   Breeders create new hybrids by cross pollinating genetics of a specific male inbred (plants with uniform performance) with a specific female inbred. This is done by planting one row of the male... Read More
Posted on May 4, 2018
There would be more public seed development if genome editing technologies like CRISPR are not regulated as GMOs. Single point mutations are an extension of the undirected mutation breeding that is commonly used now. Having genome editing regulated like conventional plant breeding would allow university plant breeders to use the technology to develop new varieties without the stigmatism of them being GMOs. As for would it allow for more start-up seed companies, this is more doubtful. It is... Read More