argylesock says… Here’s another telling of the Bowman v Monsanto case. You might choose to follow my ‘genetic modification’ tag for more about this, and related stories.
I blogged a few months ago about the Bowman v. Monsanto case heard by the Supreme Court this session. The case pit a Kentucky farmer, Vernon Hugh Bowman, against biotech giant Monsanto. At issue was the scope of Monsanto’s patent rights covering its Roundup Ready (glyphosate resistant) crops.
The Supreme Court this morning issued its decision in the case. In a rare unanimous decision, the Court upheld the decision of the lower court, holding that Bowman had violated Monsanto’s intellectual property rights by regrowing second-generation seed. The court rejected Bowman’s claim that Monsanto’s patent had been exhausted through the original sale. The patent exhaustion doctrine would normally permit the purchaser—or any subsequent owner—the right to use or resell a patented article. However, the Court ruled that Bowman’s actions fell outside the doctrine because he was not using or reselling but was instead copying the patented invention—Monsanto’s seed.
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