German court rules against Monsanto in GM corn ban

An emergency court request ended in disappointment for Monsanto on May 5 when the German court ruled that a ban on MON810, a genetically modified (GM) form of corn was justified based on preliminary assessments, according to reports by Bloomberg News.

According to Bloomberg's account of the ruling, the judges were concerned about whether the corn is dangerous to insects other than the intended pests and whether the pollen drift is more extensive than originally believed.

In an online statement [translated into English], "Monsanto is disappointed about the preliminary decision of the administration court in Braunschweig not to stop the ban of MON 810 through state Secretary of Commerce Ilse Aigner order. Ursula L├╝ttmer Ouazane, manager Monsanto agricultural Germany is quoted as saying, "the arbitrary ban of MON 810 through Aigner is not convincing and the scientific proof does not justify such a measure."

The courts say there is ample evidence showing the plant raises a 'potential' danger. The court An email statement from the courts to Bloomberg News says the law does not require "a scientific finding that shows a danger for the environment beyond [any] doubt. It's enough that new or additional information indicates that humans or animals may be hurt."

Monsanto says it plans to review the ruling and decide whether to appeal. Monsanto's MON810, a GM pest-resistant corn variety is already forbidden to be planted in France, Austria, Hungary, Greece and Luxembourg. On April 14, Aigner added Germany to the no-plant list.

The ruling does not mean this is a done deal. The judges will continue to examine the issue before issuing a verdict.

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