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4-Patents: Monsanto Brazil seeks royalties for illegal RR soy

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                                  PART I
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TITLE:  Monsanto Brazil seeks royalties for illegal RR soy
SOURCE: Reuters
DATE:   May 5, 2003

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Monsanto Brazil seeks royalties for illegal RR soy

SAO PAULO, Brazil, May 6 (Reuters) - The Brazilian unit of U.S. farm
products maker Monsanto Co said it was seeking royalties for the illegal
use of the firm's trademark genetically modified Roundup Ready (RR)
soybeans in Brazil.

The production and sale of GM soy are banned in Brazil but illegal GM soy
planting has grow rapidly in recent years as farmers, mostly in the
south, are believed to be smuggling in loads of RR soy seeds from
Argentina and Paraguay where they are legally planted.

By unofficial estimates, 30 percent of the current record crop may be
black market GM soy in Brazil, the world's No. 2 soybean producer after
the United States, which is expected to finish harvesting a 49.6 million
tonne crop in May.

"The recent formal evidence of illegal planting of RR soy in Brazil was
one of the principal reasons... for Monsanto to open discussions with...
the soy production chain to guarantee intellectual property rights," said
Monsanto in a statement released on Monday night.

The Brazilian government for several years turned a blind eye toward the
black market in soybeans, but, for the first time, the new administration
this year officially recognized that illegal GM soy planting was
occurring on a wide scale.

Rather than face the daunting task of destroying possibly a third of the
national crop, the government issued in March a decree decriminalizing
the sale of GM soy until January 2004, after which it will become illegal

"Monsanto is seeking fair alternatives for farmers, as well as ... for
international trade, without which soy and soy products exports would be
harmed," the statement said.

The company also said the climate of illegality in Brazil in respect to
GM soy "is harmful for everybody, as well as to Monsanto," which has
condemned illegal planting for years.

                                  PART II
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SOURCE: Bloomberg News, USA, by Mark Drajem
        edited and sent by Agnet, Canada
DATE:   May 2, 2003

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Washington-- U.S. farmers are, according to this story, urging the Bush
administration to take action against Brazil, saying that growers there
are pirating Monsanto Co.'s gene-altered soybeans. The story says that
U.S. farmers told the office of Trade Representative Robert Zoellick that
Brazilians are defying their government's ban on growing genetically
modified organisms by planting biotechnology seeds without paying
royalties to Monsanto -- and then marketing the crops as "GMO free."

Ron Heck, a Perry, Iowa, farmer and vice president of the American
Soybean Association, which represents 26,000 growers, was quoted as
saying, "The Brazilian farmers steal the seeds and then sell the crops
for a premium. It's not a good situation for me, and it's not a good
situation for Monsanto."

The story says that the allegations occur amid growing competition for
export sales between the U.S., the largest soybean producer, and Brazil,
the second largest. Soybeans were a $15 billion crop in the U.S. last
year, second in value only to corn, and exports account for about a third
of bushels sold. Many global customers, including China, are reluctant to
accept the new technology.

Brazil technically bans genetically modified soybeans, although it
acknowledges that they have been planted in a region in the south and
along the border with Argentina and Paraguay, where those varieties are
common. The Brazilian embassy in Washington declined to comment.