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Mar 17, 2010

Court Ban of GM Sugar Beets Denied

A federal judge in San Francisco refused to grant an injunction order filed by environmental groups to ban gene modified (GM) sugar beets. 

U.S. District Judge Jeffrey White stated that granting the order would cause "dramatic and widespread" damage to sugar beet growers.

Approximately 50% of sugar beets grown in 10 different states in the USA were subject to the injunction.  They are genetically modified by making them herbicide tolerant (HT) to Monsanto's RoundUp.  Prohibiting the planting of HT sugar beets on short notice during the planting season risked dramatic market disallocation for sugar growers and processors.  The main reason for the dislocation is that there simply is not enough conventional seed available to meet any demand to switch from GE to conventional seed.

The U.S. Agriculture Department will hold a hearing on whether to do an environmental study regarding whether to ban HT sugar beets on 9 July 2010.  Any environmental study could take several years.

For more see: Tomich, Jeffrey. "Federal judge denies temporary ban on Monsanto sugar beets." St. Louis Post-Dispatch, 17 March 2010.

Gullo, Karen.  "Judge Won’t Bar Modified-Beet Planting Immediately." BusinessWeek, 16 March 2010.

About Margaret

CEO and Curator (The Food Museum) | Managing Director and Chief Editor (GR2 Global LLC) | Educator (UCLA PhD) | Researching and writing on global food issues, nutrition and health, sustainability, history (preservation), conservation (natural resources), and design.
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