Bayer CropScience v. Pierce, et al. (E.D. Mo 2023)
Bayer and its subsidiary Monsanto have filed a new set of patent infringement lawsuits against farmers who saved seeds and replanted them in violation of Monsanto Roundup Ready patents and license agreements. Monsanto’s original patents on genetically modified plants have all expired. But, the company now primarily sells Roundup Ready 2 – Xtend seeds for soybeans and cotton. And those new lines are covered by new patents. Here, the company has asserted United States Patent Nos 9,944,945 and 7,838,729.
- The ‘729 patent has a 2007 priority date and claims plants genetically modified with a particular DNA sequence to express dicamba monooxygenase. This allows the plant to quickly catalyze and degrade the herbicide dicamba; thus allowing use of dicamba herbicide as an addition/alternative to glyphosate in the common situation involving herbicide resistant weeds.
- The ‘945 patent has a 2005 priority date and claims a transgenic soybean plant modified with a gene that confers increased glyphosate tolerance so that more glyphosate can be used without harming the soybean.
Each of the six new infringement lawsuits infringe both patent infringement as well as breach of contract for saving and planting seed down in the Missouri Bootheel.
- Bayer CropScience LP v. Robert O. Pierce, Docket No. 4:23-cv-00088 (E.D. Mo. Jan 25, 2023)
- Bayer CropScience LP v. Danny Glass, Docket No. 4:23-cv-00087 (E.D. Mo. Jan 25, 2023)
- Bayer CropScience LP v. Greg Duffy, Docket No. 4:23-cv-00086 (E.D. Mo. Jan 25, 2023)
- Bayer CropScience LP v. Caleb Duffy, Docket No. 4:23-cv-00085 (E.D. Mo. Jan 25, 2023)
- Bayer CropScience LP v. Michael Hodel, Docket No. 4:23-cv-00084 (E.D. Mo. Jan 25, 2023)
- Bayer CropScience LP v. Brian G. Irions, Docket No. 4:23-cv-00083 (E.D. Mo. Jan 25, 2023)
I expect that Bayer will easily win these cases, but we’ll see. So far, none of the farmers have lodged an appearance in court.