Brazil soy growers ask court to cancel Monsanto's Intacta patent
They are claiming irregularities, including the company's alleged failure to prove it brings de facto technological innovation.
The Mato Grosso branch of Aprosoja, the association representing the growers that filed the lawsuit at a federal court on Wednesday, claimed "the patent does not fully reveal the invention so as to allow, at the end of the exclusivity period, any person can freely have access to it."
That requirement "avoids that a company controls a technology for an undetermined period of time," Aprosoja said, adding Intacta's patent protection extends through October 2022.
Monsanto said it has not been formally notified of the lawsuit and therefore would not make a statement.
Mato Grosso farmers are leading a push in Brazil to replace genetically modified soybeans with non-GM seeds.
"Aprosoja is not against innovation or paying for intellectual property," its head Endrigo Dalcin said, but added that farmers should not have to pay for technology that is protected by what it claims to be an invalid patent.
With about 53 percent of Brazil's soy area planted with Intacta technology in the 2016/17 crop cycle, Monsanto is a dominant force, Aprosoja says, citing data from consultancy Agroconsult. ■