Syngenta GMO Corn Litigation
Multiple farmers across the United States are involved in a large scale lawsuit involving the Swiss global biotech company Syngenta. The company marketed and sold billions of dollars-worth of genetically modified corn to farmers who were led to believe the products were approved for import by Chinese markets, one of the most significant markets in the US corn industry. When China declined approval of Syngenta’s Agrisure Viptura and Agrisure Duracade strains in 2013, corn prices nose-dived, resulting in catastrophic losses for farmers across the country.
Foreign market availability is a crucial element in the determination of US corn prices. The biotechnology industry regulates foreign approval, the price of US agricultural goods, and the role of US farmers as ‘stakeholders’ in each bio-tech company through guidelines called “Stewardship Standards.” US farmers involved in the lawsuit claim Syngenta betrayed these standards by misrepresenting Chinese approval status of their product. This resulted in billions of dollars of losses for American farmers, including those who chose not to purchase Agrisure Viptera and Agrisure Duracade.Agrisure Viptera and Agrisure Duracade
Both strains of corn are genetically modified to improve yield by preventing natural predators from destroying crops:
- Agrisure Viptera, also known as MIR 162, controls lepidopteron insect larvae, including the corn earworm, cutworm, armyworm, and corn borer. Syngenta invested millions of dollars over a five year span to develop MIR 162.
- Agrisure Duracade targets the resistance trait of the corn rootworm. By targeting the worm’s digestive organs, this type of corn breaks the cycle.
A 2014 study by the National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA) revealed a loss of about $2.9 billion for US farmers and exporters. In September 2014, distributing company Cargill, Inc. was the first to file against Syngenta, claiming over $90 million of losses. Four days later,Transcoastal Supply, a livestock feed exporter, claimed $41 million in losses. Archer Daniels Midland Company was the third to follow suit. In less than a year, over 10,000 individual farmers, exporters, and grain elevator companies have filed lawsuits seeking compensation for financial damages.US Loss of China’s Market
Prior to its rejection of import approval for Syngenta’s corn products, China accounted for the highest corn revenue to the US in 2013. An 87% decline in corn export to China occurred in the first half of 2014, with a subsequent 14% drop in 2015. The United States Department of Agriculture predicted that China would be the country’s largest corn export market by 2020 before they rejected import approval for Syngenta’s products.Altman & Altman, LLP: Syngenta Corn Lawsuit Representation
At Altman & Altman, LLP, we understand the devastating effects caused by unforeseen and significant profit losses. Farmers’ livelihoods depend on the ethical business practices of the companies they work with. Our legal team will work diligently and aggressively to prove that Syngenta’s negligence has negatively impacted your business. If you have been affected by Syngenta’s misrepresentation of its Agrisure Viptera and Agrisure Duracade corn strains, you deserve to be compensated for your losses. Contact Altman & Altman, LLP today for a free consultation.