Business

Monsanto wins billionaire suit in Brazil. But farmers’ fight continues

Monsanto soybeans brazil
Harvesters working in soybean harvest in the state of Mato Grosso. Photo: Kelvin Helen Haboski

The Brazilian Superior Court of Justice has ruled in favor of global agribusiness conglomerate Monsanto in a landmark class-action lawsuit filed by Brazilian farmers’ unions.

On October 9, a panel of nine justices unanimously decided that farmers cannot save seeds for replanting if the seeds are harvested from Monsanto’s patented Roundup Ready soybeans—genetically engineered to withstand the direct application of the company’s Roundup herbicide.

The Brazilian ruling aligns with similar decisions in the U.S. and Canada. Courts in all three countries determined that, as a product of genetic engineering, Roundup Ready soybeans are protected by domestic patent...

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