Monsanto Soybean Patent Cannot Stretch To Processed Soy Meal, European Court Says 07/07/2010 by Catherine Saez, Intellectual Property Watch 3 Comments Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Yesterday, the European Court of Justice ruled in a case pitching Monsanto against European importers of Argentinean soy meal, denying the US seed giant intellectual property rights over the exports of soy meal from Argentina to the European Union. The importers were supported by the Argentina government. After three cargo shipments to the Netherlands were detained in 2005 and 2006 and found by Monsanto to contain DNA sequence of its herbicide tolerant soy, which was not under patent in Argentina, the company applied for injunction against the importers before The Hague District Court, and “for a prohibition of infringement of the European patent in all countries in which the patent is valid,” according to the judgment. Monsanto holds patents on the DNA sequence of soy beans resistant to its Roundup herbicide in Europe. One of the European exporters, supported by the Argentine state, argued that the DNA present in the soy meal no longer performed its function as such. Under debate was the interpretation of Article 9 98/44/EC of the European Parliament and the Council of 6 July 1998 on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions. The Court agreed with the defendant. Click here to read the Court judgment (case C/428-08). Days before the judgment, Monsanto withdrew its legal complaint against the European soy meal importers and settled the case, according to news sources. It is unclear what impact this has on interpretations of the ruling. In its judgment, the Court found: “Article 9 of Directive 98/44/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 6 July 1998 on the legal protection of biotechnological inventions is to be interpreted as not conferring patent right protection in circumstances such as those of the case in the main proceedings, in which the patented product is contained in the soy meal, where it does not perform the function for which it is patented, but did perform that function previously in the soy plant, of which the meal is a processed product, or would possibly again be able to perform that function after it had been extracted from the soy meal and inserted into the cell of a living organism.” Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to email this to a friend (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window) Related Catherine Saez may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org."Monsanto Soybean Patent Cannot Stretch To Processed Soy Meal, European Court Says" by Intellectual Property Watch is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.