Syngenta says prices influenced China rejection of GMO corn

decrease font size  Resize text   increase font size       Printer-friendly version of this article Printer-friendly version of this article

Syngenta AG said that grain prices have played a role in China's rejection of U.S. corn shipments containing an unauthorized, genetically modified trait developed by the company.

China, the world's third-biggest corn buyer, has turned away since November more than 900,000 tonnes of U.S. corn containing Syngenta's Agrisure Viptera trait.

"There's unquestionably a global trade issue at play here relating to contracts and prices," said David Morgan, Syngenta's regional director of North America.

Syngenta, the world's largest crop chemicals company, has been waiting for China to approve Viptera, known as MIR 162, for import for more than four years.

Beijing started cracking down on shipments containing the trait late last year, even though Viptera corn had been mixed in with other varieties since China increased imports of U.S. corn in 2011.

The rejections have fueled speculation among grain traders that China was strictly enforcing its ban as a way to exit contracts for pricey corn and to prevent imports into a well-supplied market. U.S. corn futures soared to $8 a bushel last summer and dropped almost 50 percent by November.

Pressure from Chinese who believe the country should be more self sufficient in food production is another explanation for the government's rejections of U.S. corn containing Viptera, Morgan said. There is no one reason behind the rejections, he added.

China's Biosafety Committee is due to meet this week or next to decide whether to approve Viptera, engineered to offer protection against crop-damaging insects.

After years of waiting for approval, Morgan said he had become "sober" in his expectations of what would come out of China.

"I'm hopeful that they will proceed in the next discussion but until we hear from them, I'm not going to count any chickens, as they say," he said in a telephone interview.

Niu Dun, China's vice agriculture minister, said in December that Viptera corn could not be accepted because it had not been approved by the ministry for import.

China has found its debate over imports of GMO farm products "to be a convenient tool to use to try and protect the Chinese market," Fred Gale, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's China chair, said at a conference this month.

China holds more than 90 million tonnes of corn in state stockpiles. Traders are expecting the government to sell some grain as early as May.

Buyers Guide

Doyle Equipment Manufacturing Co.
Doyle Equipment Manufacturing prides themselves as being “The King of the Rotary’s” with their Direct Drive Rotary Blend Systems. With numerous setup possibilities and sizes, ranging from a  more...
A.J. Sackett Sons & Company
Sackett Blend Towers feature the H.I.M, High Intensity Mixer, the next generation of blending and coating technology which supports Precision Fertilizer Blending®. Its unique design allows  more...
R&R Manufacturing Inc.
The R&R Minuteman Blend System is the original proven performer. Fast, precise blending with a compact foot print. Significantly lower horsepower requirement. Low inload height with large  more...
Junge Control Inc.
Junge Control Inc. creates state-of-the-art product blending and measuring solutions that allow you to totally maximize operating efficiency with amazing accuracy and repeatability, superior  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The flagship blending system for the Layco product line is the fully automated Layco DW System™. The advanced technology of the Layco DW (Declining Weight) system results in a blending  more...
Yargus Manufacturing
The LAYCOTE™ Automated Coating System provides a new level of coating accuracy for a stand-alone coating system or for coating (impregnating) in an automated blending system. The unique  more...
John Deere
The DN345 Drawn Dry Spreader can carry more than 12 tons of fertilizer and 17.5 tons of lime. Designed to operate at field speeds up to 20 MPH with full loads and the G4 spreader uniformly  more...
Force Unlimited
The Pro-Force is a multi-purpose spreader with a wider apron and steeper sides. Our Pro-Force has the most aggressive 30” spinner on the market, and is capable of spreading higher rates of  more...
BBI Spreaders
MagnaSpread 2 & MagnaSpread 3 — With BBI’s patented multi-bin technology, these spreaders operate multiple hoppers guided by independent, variable-rate technology. These models are built on  more...

Comments (0) Leave a comment 

e-Mail (required)


characters left

Blend and Bulk Tower Systems

Waconia Towers provide speed, efficiency and reliability that only gravity-fed systems can offer. Towers are available with up to 300 ... Read More

View all Products in this segment

View All Buyers Guides

Feedback Form
Feedback Form