Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy
05 November 2019

Brazilian farmers’ unions against Monsanto: analysing the legal controversy

What happens when intellectual property laws that protect companies conflict with the rights of farmers to plant their fields?

On October 9, the Brazilian Superior Court of Justice issued a much-awaited decision in a class action lawsuit filed by farmers’ unions against Monsanto in 2009. The case concerns the rights of farmers to save and replant seeds from patented “Roundup Ready” soybeans without having to pay royalties to Monsanto (now Bayer).

This class action suit is one of three legal case studies researched by Shalini Randeria and Karine Peschard in the context of the SNF project “Bringing the seed wars to the courtroom: Legal activism and the governance of plant genetic resources in Brazil and India”.

Karine Peschard, Research Associate at the Albert Hirschman Centre on Democracy, has published a comment on the court ruling in The Conversation, a widely-read open access media outlet, whose articles are written by academics and researchers.

Read her article here.