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|Articles - April 2012|
|Thursday, March 22, 2012|
Page 2 of 5
Morton says winning the lawsuit won’t help him soon. Since Roundup Ready sugarbeets were planted in the Willamette Valley, Morton says he has lost tens of thousands as buyers headed elsewhere amid rumblings that his land has been contaminated.
“I grow table beets and I grow Swiss chard. Both of these are the same species of the sugarbeet, there’s no difference. These plants can freely cross pollinate,” says Morton. He now spends $300 to $900 a crop verifying the organic content of his seeds and has abandoned some breeding projects.
Farmers around the nation echoed those issues in the OSGATA litigation. And bigger than the threat of new costs and cross pollinaton is a fear of lawsuits, one they say is increasingly suffocating amid heightened risks and small margins.
OSGATA purports Monsanto has filed 144 lawsuits nationally against farmers in two years, while settling another 700. Monsanto disputes that it has ever sued farmers over chance outcrossing, only license violations — either use of patented seeds without permission or seed saving, which the company prohibits, a claim that New York federal Judge Naomi Reice Buchwald found to be true.
“Monsanto never has — and has committed it never will — sue a farmer if our patented seed or traits are found in his field as a result of inadvertent means,” says Tom Helscher, director of corporate affairs at Monsanto, who responded via email.
Jim Gerritsen, a Maine farmer who is president of OSGATA, says Monsanto’s unwillingness to sign a deal protecting organic farmers has a chilling effect. “Even if we believed them, what would prevent them from waking up tomorrow and changing their minds?” he says, adding organic farmers need clear information about business risks.
Friday, May 30, 2014
BY DEBRA RINGOLD | OB GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
Since 1970 the performance of our public education system has steadily deteriorated.
Monday, July 14, 2014
BY TERRY "STARBUCKER" ST. MARIE
I really didn’t know that much about angel investing, but I did know a lot about the entrepreneurial spirit.
Thursday, June 26, 2014
BY ERIC FRUTS | OB BLOGGER
Last year, the housing market in Oregon—and the U.S. as a whole—was blasting off. The Case-Shiller index of home prices ended the year 13% higher than at the beginning of the year. But, was last year a blip, or a trend?
Thursday, May 29, 2014
BY SOPHIA BENNETT
Tillamook expands its tourism niche.
Monday, July 07, 2014
BY TOM COX | OB BLOGGER
Named after the 2010 experiment by Thomas Ryan, "Robin Sages" are fake social media profiles designed to encourage linking and divulging valuable information.
Tuesday, July 01, 2014
BY HANNAH WALLACE | OB BLOGGER
Demand for organic food continues to soar: Last year, sales of organic food rose to $32.3 billion — up 10% from 2012. In Oregon, organic produce wholesaler Organically Grown Co. has been championing organic growing methods for four decades.
Friday, May 30, 2014
Watch the 2014 100 Best Green Companies keynote speech by Eric Friedenwald-Fishman.
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