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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, October 31, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR
Why are there so few transportation startups in Portland? The city’s leadership in bike, transit and pedestrian transportation has been well-documented. But that was then — when government and nonprofits paved the way for a new, less auto centric way of life.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY KIM MOORE
Businesses spend billions of dollars each year trying to influence political decision makers by piling money into campaigns.
Wednesday, October 22, 2014
BY KIM MOORE
Fred Ziari aims to feed the global population.
Thursday, December 04, 2014
BY DEBRA RINGOLD | OP-ED CONTRIBUTOR
How important are institutional and/or program evaluations provided by third parties in selecting a college or university program?
Monday, November 10, 2014
BY KIM MOORE | OB RESEARCH EDITOR
A market for low-carbon transportation fuels has a chance to flourish in Oregon if regulators adopt the second phase of the state’s Clean Fuels Program.
Sunday, December 07, 2014
BY LINDA BAKER
On Friday, Uber switched on an app — and with one push of the button torpedoed Portland’s famed public process.
Thursday, November 20, 2014
BY OB STAFF
Farmers, grocery stores and food processors cash in on kale.
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While the Bend City Council ultimately upheld the approval which enables OSU-Cascades to move forward with the 10 acre site, it did also thoughtfully consider the nature of its code requirements, resident concerns and OSU-Cascade’s efforts and suggestions and crafted conditions of approval to address potential impacts of the site in the area.