Texas farmers who have seen their corn crops drop dramatically in price may be able to file a lawsuit to recover their losses.
Famers in several states already have lawsuits against Syngenta for allegedly promising higher profits from their Agrisure Viptera MIR162 GMO corn. Syngenta created the MIR162 seed strain to display resistance to black cutworm, corn borers, corn rootworm and other common insect pests. But when the Chinese government refused to approve the seed and began banning almost the entire U.S. crop from entering the country, farmers hers saw their profits slashed.
The prospect of a Texas Syngenta lawsuit emerged because of allegedly false claims and misleading information released by the company. Michael Mack, chief executive at Syngenta, said that China was in the process of clearing the way to accept corn produced by the seed. The company allegedly encouraged farmers to purchase and plant the seed, along with reassuring grain elevators, exporters and the public that approval would be granted. Farmers complied and planted the new crop.
However, by November of 2013, China issued a zero-tolerance policy concerning the Viptera MIR 162 imports because it had not yet approved the corn. Sample testing began, vessels were turned away and cargo was rejected whenever Chinese inspectors found evidence of the corn in grain or alcohol products. Prior to this event, the U.S. enjoyed being the largest supplier of corn to the Asian country. China was the third largest importer from the U.S. The Chinese are estimated to have refused 1.45 million metric tons of Viptera GMO corn and grains containing samples of MIR 162.
The Financial Impact
The National Grain and Feed Association released a report in the spring of 2014 that claimed the ban cost farmers and distilleries $2.9 billion in revenues. By the end of 2014, this number is expected to rise to $3.4 billion. Prior to the trouble with Syngenta corn, China exported about 5 million tons of corn from the U.S. annually. Chinese inspectors have refused 85 percent of imports, which some speculate caused corn prices to drop to a five-year low. The NGFA claims that the problems with GMO exports effectively reduced the price of corn by $0.11 per bushel. Futures previously boasted prices of $8 per bushel during the summer of 2013. However, before the end of the year, the price offered was virtually cut in half. The Texas Syngenta lawsuit was created in an attempt at helping corn farmers recoup the losses suffered.
The Texas Syngenta lawsuit does not only apply to MIR162 growers. As prices apply to the entire market, all corn growers feel the crunch. Additionally, pollen from fields containing the Syngenta GMO corn drift into and contaminate fields of farmers who did not plant the seed. This phenomenon causes cross-breeding and a crop that cannot be exported to China. Since the ban on GMO corn exports, China has attempted to mend trade relations between the two countries by increasing imports of U.S. based sorghum. Meanwhile, the Asian country has been getting corn from Argentina, Brazil and the Ukraine.
Do You Believe Your Corn Profits Have Fallen Because of the Syngenta Viptera Seed?
If you are a corn grower in Texas and you believe you have lost money because of Syngenta, contact Attorney Group for Texas. Our affiliated attorneys can file a Texas Syngenta lawsuit on your behalf at no out-of-pocket cost to you and help you receive a monetary compensation for your loss.