GMO giant Monsanto will have to fork out $2.4 million to settle a lawsuit with US wheat farmers after its genetically engineered strain, supposedly banned and scrapped a decade ago, was found alive and well in Oregon in 2013.
$2.15 million will go towards a settlement fund for farmers in Oregon, Idaho and Washington, who all sold the wheat between May 30 and November 30, 2013.
A further $250,000 will go to wheat grower’s associations, including $100,000 to the National Wheat Foundation, and $50,000 each to the wheat and grain growers associations in the above states.
Out-of-pocket costs by the plaintiffs’ council will also be reimbursed.
‘Roundup Ready’, as the wheat strain is amicably known, was supposed to be either destroyed or stored 10 years ago when it was outlawed. The miracle strain was resistant to Monsanto’s Roundup pesticide, and was one of a number in a whole range of Roundup Ready products.
Alarms were raised in 2013 when an Oregon farmer noticed that wheat plants on his property were still growing after the field had been doused with pesticide. He promptly alerted the USDA, which got involved.
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