Farmers vs. Monsanto: Court Case Update

Organic market13th June 2013

By  Jack Adam Weber

Contributing Writer for  Wake Up World

Many of you likely recall the OSGATA vs. Monsanto case from last year. The Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association (OSGATA), comprised of some 300,000 individuals and non-GMO farming alliances, filed suit against the biotech behemoth Monsanto in 2011 in order to protect themselves against Monsanto’s suing for incidental GMO seed drift onto their non-GMO fields.

To the world’s outrage, OSGATA’s case was denied last year by judge Naomi Buchwald on insufficient grounds for bringing a preemptive case against Monsanto. In other words, they were denied the right to protect themselves against Monsatno’s frivolous lawsuits. OSGATA vowed to appeal, which they did, and that appeal was finally heard by a three-judge panel on June 10, 2013.

Unfortunately, Judge Buchwald’s decision was again upheld. But this time, we won something. The plaintiffs were denied because Monsanto went on record making a promise. “Monsanto has made binding assurances that it will not take legal action against growers whose crops might inadvertently contain traces of Monsanto biotech genes (because, for example, some transgenic seed or pollen blew onto the grower’s land).”

Dan Ravicher, the attorney for OSGATA, understands the recent decision as a partial victory.

“Before this suit, the Organic Seed plaintiffs were forced to take expensive precautions and avoid full use of their land in order to not be falsely accused of patent infringement by Monsanto,” said Ravicher. “The decision today means that the farmers did have the right to bring the suit to protect themselves, but now that Monsanto has bound itself not to sue the plaintiffs, the Court of Appeals believes the suit should not move forward.”

In other words, even though OSGATA again had their case denied, farmers across the nation are now guaranteed protection against Monsanto’s dubious practice of aggressively seeking out otherwise innocent and often unwitting violators to persecute for stealing Monsanto’s “intellectual property”—i.e., their lousy patented GMO seeds.

On the brightest side, today’s decision allows farmers who are contaminated by Monsanto’s GMO junk to sue Monsanto and Monsanto’s customers for damages caused by that contamination without fear Monsanto’s retaliating with a “patent infringement” claim.

Today’s ruling may give farmers a toehold in courts regarding the unwanted contamination of their crops, but it does not protect our food supply from the continued proliferation of Monsanto’s flawed technology,” said Dave Murphy, founder and executive director of Food Democracy Now!, a co-plaintiff in the lawsuit. “The real threat of continued contamination of our nation’s food supply was only highlighted last week when Monsanto’s unapproved GMO wheat was discovered in an Oregon farmer’s field more than 10 years after it was legally planted in that state.”

Despite the Court of Appeals’ Decision today the plaintiffs (OSGATA) still have the option to ask the Supreme Court to review the Court of Appeals decision and to reinstate the case. Attorney Ravicher said the Organic Seed plaintiffs are considering doing so.

We hope they do and gain more injunctions against the biotech bully—for our sake and for the Earth’s sake!

Please continue to boycott all Monsanto products and if you have not, please join GEM for updates and how to safeguard your health and those you love from the pollution of GMOs.

Article Sources

http://www.osgata.org/2013/monsanto-bound-to-promise-not-to-sue-organic-farmers

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Jack Adam Weber’s “The Nourish Practice”  is an easy, guided meditation-Qi Gong practice in radical gratitude and self-love. It is an Earth-based, body-centered practice — at once physiological and mythological — that is deeply relaxing and replenishing, especially for modern-day burn-out syndrome, and requires little physical effort.

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About the author:

Jack Adam WeberJack Adam Weber, L.Ac. is a Chinese medicine physician, author, celebrated poet, organic farmer, and activist for body-centered spirituality. His books, artwork, and provocative poems can be found at his website PoeticHealing.com. He is also the creator of The Nourish Practice, an Earth-based rejuvenation meditation. Weber is available by phone for medical consultations and life-coaching.

You can connect with Jack Adam Weber on Facebook or by emailing [email protected].

 


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