(Corrects to remove reference to a different lawsuit from paragraph 3 and replaces that with the relevant one)
Aug 1 (Reuters) - Global agribusiness group Monsanto Co has been awarded $1 billion in damages in a patent infringement trial against DuPont and its agricultural crop subsidiary DuPont Pioneer.
The trial revolved around Monsanto’s patented Roundup Ready technology.
Monsanto was arguing that DuPont, through its Pioneer Hi-Bred International unit, violated a 2002 licensing agreement giving DuPont the right to use Monsanto’s glyphosate-tolerant Roundup Ready soybean trait.
“This verdict also underscores that DuPont’s unauthorized use of the Roundup Ready technology was both deliberate and aimed at rescuing its own failed technology,” Monsanto said in a statement.
DuPont said it will appeal against the verdict at the earliest possible opportunity.
Both companies hold strong positions in the U.S. seed industry and have been racing each other and other competitors to develop higher-yielding crops through genetic modifications and other means. Roundup Ready soybeans and other crops have become wildly popular with farmers, and have become the base for other ‘stacks’ of genetic traits developed for crops.
The case is in Re: Monsanto Co vs E.I. Dupont De Nemours, U.S. District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, No. 09-00686. (Reporting by Eileen Anupa Soreng in Bangalore; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman) ( (firstname.lastname@example.org; within U.S. +1 646 223 8780; outside U.S. +91 80 4135 5919; Reuters messaging: email@example.com))