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Attorney General's News Release

March 12, 2010

Attorney General Koster participates in national summit on agriculture antitrust issues

Jefferson City, Mo. – Attorney General Chris Koster is in Des Moines, Iowa, today, participating in a national meeting to discuss antitrust issues in agriculture. Koster is co-chair of the National Association of Attorneys General’s antitrust task force, working on antitrust issues on behalf of the Attorneys General across the country. Also attending today’s forum:

  • Eric Holder, United States Attorney General
  • Tom Vilsack, United States Secretary of Agriculture
  • Christine Varney, Assistant Attorney General for Antitrust, United States Department of Justice

Koster said a significant part of today’s discussions will focus on antitrust issues related to the seed industry. The Monsanto company in recent years has been at the center of a dispute related to the antitrust implications of its RoundUp Ready seed products and associated agreements with other seed producers and farmers. Monsanto, which is headquartered in Missouri, is a world leader in utilizing biotechnology and breeding in seed development.

“I anticipate that as technology continues to advance, antitrust issues will play an increasingly larger role in agriculture production,” Koster said. “The goal is to ensure competitive food production in order to keep prices low and the market healthy. Monsanto’s unique role in seed production makes our office’s continued involvement in this issue all the more important.”

Today’s forum is jointly sponsored by the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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