New York Times (pg. D4), June 16, 1998
MONSANTO CITED IN CROP LOSSES
Three Mississippi cotton farmers who planted genetically engineered seed, then watched as their cotton bolls shriveled and fell to the ground, should be paid more than $1.9 million by the Monsanto Company and two seed companies for their losses, an arbitration council of the Mississippi Department of Agriculture and Commerce ruled on Friday.
The Mississippi Seed Arbitration Council's decision is not binding and it was unclear yesterday whether Monsanto along with the Delta and Pine Land Company and its subsidiary, the Paymaster Technology Company, which are both now being purchased by Monsanto, would pay the ordered amount.
Fifty-five Mississippi farmers who used Roundup Ready cotton seed complained to the arbitration council last fall, saying the seed, which incorporated a gene developed by Monsanto that was supposed to allow the cotton to be sprayed with a herbicide to control weeds without damaging the cotton, led to lower yields.
Most of those cases were settled privately, bringing the farmers perhaps $5 million or less, Steve Cox, the lawyer for the farmers, said.