News

16.02.2018

Judge tosses challenge to Arkansas' dicamba ban

An Arkansas judge has dismissed a company's challenge of the state's ban on a controversial weed killer, citing a state Supreme Court ruling that has made it more difficult to sue the state.

Pulaski County Circuit Judge Chris Piazza on Friday dismissed a lawsuit by Monsanto challenging the state Plant Board's decision to ban dicamba's use between April 16 and Oct. 31. Monsanto was also challenging an earlier rule that specifically targeted its brand of dicamba.

15.02.2018

French Wine Study Shows Humans Can Taste Pesticides

The results of the first ever study on the ability of humans to recognize the taste of pesticides in wine have been published in the Food and Nutrition Journal.

Professor Gilles-Eric Séralini and the chef Jérôme Douzelet’s study involved 195 blind tests carried out by professionals from the wine and culinary industry.

14.02.2018

Mathematics explains why Crispr-Cas9 sometimes cuts the wrong DNA

Initially the Crispr-Cas9 system seemed to be accurate, but it is now apparent that it sometimes also cuts non-target DNA sequences

Once again we find more honesty about the imprecision of the CRISPR gene editing system in the medical research field, as with the new paper featured below, than in the field of crop biotechnology.

1. Mathematics explains why Crispr-Cas9 sometimes cuts the wrong DNA

2. Hybridization kinetics explains CRISPR-Cas off-targeting rules

12.02.2018

CCI must stop the Bayer Monsanto merger

Bayer Monsanto merger

By Dr Vandana Shiva

On 7.1.2018 the Competition Commission of India(CCI), India’s anti-trust body for preventing monopoly,invited comments from the public on the adverse impacts of the Bayer-Monsanto merger. I submitted my objections on the Bayer Monsanto merger to CCI on January 20 2018. There are many reasons why the merger must not be allowed.

12.02.2018

Farmers, Conservationists Challenge Trump’s EPA, Monsanto Over Crop-Damaging Pesticide

EPA Unlawfully Approved Monsanto’s XtendiMax Weed-Killer, Ignoring Warnings of Rampant Drift, Destroying Crops on Millions of Acres in Devastating 2017 Farm Season With More to Come

Evidence Shows Hundreds of Endangered Species at Risk and Unprotected

WASHINGTON—On Friday, public interest organizations representing farmers and conservationists made their legal case in a federal lawsuit against the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Monsanto Company, challenging EPA’s approval of Monsanto’s new “XtendiMax” pesticide. XtendiMax is Monsanto’s version of dicamba, an old and highly drift-prone weed-killer. EPA’s approval permitted XtendiMax to be sprayed for the first time on growing soybeans and cotton that Monsanto has genetically engineered (GE) to be resistant to dicamba.

12.02.2018

China increases corn imports from Ukraine

Some Chinese buyers have canceled corn purchases from the United States and started to buy corn from rival supplier Ukraine, as Beijing announced rather high requirements for the processing of genetically modified crops.

This has been reported by Reuters with a reference to three trade sources and an analyst.

“Traders this year have been more inclined to buy corn from Ukraine as it is non-GMO and doesn’t require the (processing) permit,” said Cherry Zhang, analyst with Shanghai JC Intelligence.

According to the agency, any prolonged shift by one of the world’s top corn importers “would unnerve U.S. farmers as they prepare to harvest a bumper crop this year and could potentially mark a new front in trade tensions festering between China and the United States”.

12.02.2018

EPA Settles Syngenta Pesticide Claim For Pennies On The Dollar

The GMO company will pay $150,000 instead of the $4.8 million that had been sought for exposing Kauai workers to pesticides.

Federal environmental regulators have settled claims against a multinational GMO corn grower that exposed dozens of workers on Kauai to a dangerous pesticide in two separate incidents.

Syngenta Hawaii, a local unit of the Swiss giant Syngenta AG, will pay a civil penalty of $150,000 and spend $400,000 on worker protection training sessions for growers under the agreement.

It’s a fraction of the more than $4.8 million the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency had announced it was seeking for the 2016 mishap alone, which sent 10 workers to the hospital.

08.02.2018

SIT to probe Monsanto’s role in production, sale of herbicide-tolerant Bt Cotton in State

Maharashtra Government has constituted a Special Investigation Team (SIT) to conduct probe into how many seed companies produced and sold Bt Cotton seeds with herbicide-tolerant transgenic gene though there was no permission to do so.

The issue of seed companies selling unauthorised herbicide-tolerant transgenic Bt Cotton seeds had come to fore following the media attention towards the deaths of farmers and farm-labourers due to pesticide spraying. Many farmers had alleged that the dealers had sold to them ‘BG-III’ seeds that were herbicide-tolerant. The herbicide-tolerant Bt Cotton plants remained unaffected even if farmers sprayed herbicides in their farm to remove the weeds and protect cotton plants. Later, the Government found that many seed companies had produced and sold Bt Cotton seeds with ‘transgenic herbicide/Glyphosate tolerant trait’. The said seeds were not permitted to be sold in the market. Against this backdrop, the Government has constituted SIT to conduct a probe into the matter.

08.02.2018

Group Asks Trump Administration to Stop Bayer-Monsanto Acquisition

An advocacy group is seeking the attention of the Trump Administration to block Bayer's acquisition of Monsanto. ( Bayer )

Farmers and Families First have launched a television advertisement asking the U.S. Department of Justice and President Donald Trump to stop Bayer’s acquisition of Monsanto.

The ad, “Save the Heartland,” highlights what it describes as “negative impacts” of the proposed deal to farmers and middle-class families. The ad is set to air on select Fox News stations in the Washington, D.C., media market.

Farmers and Families First describes itself as a “free market-based policy advocate” created to help American farmers and American families. “Our primary goal is to put ideas into action that promote innovation, lower costs through competition and fairness for farmers and families,” the group’s website states.

07.02.2018

Germany′s Angela Merkel finally reaches coalition deal with SPD

Agriculture: The pesticide glyphosate, a source of much friction between the CSU and SPD , will be banned, along with genetically modified crops. On top of that, the two parties agreed to limit animal experiments and to introduce a new "animal welfare label" to help ensure better conditions in industrial farming. That measure was already being planned by current Agriculture Minister Christian Schmidt of the CSU.