I have spent the last couple of weeks reading the transcript of the oral arguements in the Pubpat lawsuit against Monsanto. Judge Naomi Buchwald heard these arguments on January 31st in the Southern District Court of New York. Very interesting reading. We have to wait until the end of March for her decision. Basically she will be deciding whether or not to let the case go forward. The most interesting thing to me was when Seth Waxman (lawyer for Monsanto) said “The requested relief that all of Monsanto’s patents be declared invalid is not going to make it less likely that the traditional processes of cross pollinations and seed drift are not going to occur, and in fact if the patents are invalidated, there will be no private restraint against any farmer in the country with or without a license using transgenic seed.” The judge then replied “Actually, I never thought about that. Even if the patent was invalid, it doesn’t outlaw the product.” And cunundrum indeed.
However, making it financially unattractive for companies like Monsanto to patent Frankenfood is the goal here. After we accomplish that then we can deal with any unintended consequences.
It was a link on Facebook today that finally got me off square one to write about this. The headline on the article conflates Willie Nelson’s promotion of the Occupy the Food System and the Pubpat lawsuit but the article itself is good. Enjoy.