What happens when the Roundup Ready patent expires?
Companies and farmers are looking forward to what has been announced as the end of the patent for Roundup Ready One (RR1), which is set to occur in late 2014. Questions are being asked now so that plans can be made to coincide with the patent expiration.
The first assumption should be that seed companies are likely to find a way around allowing farmers to be free to do what they want in saving seed and planting seed with the RR1 trait. It isn’t uncommon for a large amount of soybean seed in today’s market to have other patented traits included; therefore, those patents would restrict saved seed planting.
And just like the old message to farmers, there is what is often referred to as gradual deterioration of the varietal purity. This might be reflected in terms of the yield potential or even the ability to withstand the application of glyphosate herbicide over the top.
There are also a lot of considerations about marketing and exporting of RR1 grain, which is having to be worked out by a consortium of those involved in the seed business.
A good article about the basics from a farmer/grower point of view and an outlook to the future was printed by Farm & Ranch Guide. The article can be read by clicking here.