In 2009 GMO corn known as Agrisure Viptera, Duracade, or MIR 162 was marketed by the Swiss mega corporation Syngenta to corn farmers across the country. Viptera contains a protein to make it pest resistant. It received U.S. approval in 2010. Syngenta is the world's largest agri-chemical company. They promised farmers that they could plant the corn, Viptera, with confidence and led them to believe their crops could be readily sold on the market. Viptera was planted next to other crops, which allowed for cross-pollination, as the company promoted. It was also mixed with other corn varieties at grain elevators, and holding and shipping stations. It wasn’t long until Viptera had mingled with the entire American corn supply.
This corn was made unsellable in 2013 when China began rejecting all U.S. corn when traces of Viptera were found on import shipments. China is the third largest US export market for corn: 1 million metric tons of corn were turned away due to the contamination. China has a well known testing period before approving any GMO food. Viptera was not tested and approved for export to China until December 2014. Farmers took another hit when the price of corn then dropped 60% due to lack of demand globally (exports have dropped 85%) and over production domestically. American corn farmers were economically devastated.
Broken Promises and Damages
Syngenta misled American farmers about the timeline for regulatory approval and misinformed members of the corn industry that approval from China was soon forthcoming and that lack of approval would have no impact on sale of Viptera. Instead, they knowing put farmers and their families at risk by marketing and promoting a product they knew was not approved for import and that they knew would contaminate the entire U.S. corn supply. Not only did China not want to purchase this corn, even domestic grain companies turned away corn grown with these seeds. As of February 2015, 762 lawsuits have been filed against Syngenta in Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas, Illinois, and Missouri.
Are you Involved in the Corn Industry?
Family owned farms across America, businesses, processors, and those involved in corn transport have taken a financial hit due to Syngenta’s actions. Many people like you base their livelihoods on selling the corn they grow. It doesn’t matter if you grew Syngenta or a different hybrid, and it doesn’t matter whether you sold your crop, used it to feed livestock, or used it for some other purpose-if you were involved in the corn industry between 2011-2014, you may be entitled to compensation for your losses, even if you never bought or used Syngenta corn. If you have suffered negative impacts due to Syngenta’s actions contact us and take action today.
Call the Hershewe Law Firm at 417-999-9999 or contact us for a free consultation to find out how we can help.
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