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2-Plants: Key Brazilian state to ban GM soy

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Feb 22/99
Reuters Sao Paulo

Agricultural Secretary Jose Hermeto Hoffamann of Brazil's second-largest 
soybean-producing state Rio Grande do Sul was cited as saying the state 
is trying to ban planting of genetically modified soybeans produced by a 
local unit of Monsanto Co., adding, "We have decided that they should be 
prohibited. What we are doing now is looking into the ways that this 
legally can be done." The story notes that Brazil broke from its historic 
ban on transgenic crops last September by officially recognizing 
Monsanto's herbicide-resistant Roundup Ready seeds as safe. But Hoffamann 
was cited as saying the federal government's decision did not reflect the 
wishes of producers in Rio Grande do Sul, who fear they may lose sales to 
transgenic-wary European markets with the introduction of Roundup Ready, 
and that the state saw an opportunity to create a speciality market with 
the transgenic-free soybean crop, which would help offset shrinking 
profit margins as world prices slide.

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