Source: Faegre & Benson

The fifth and final Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Agriculture workshop was slated to focus on margins in the food and agriculture industries, but much of the workshop focused on margins in the retail grocery sector; therefore, Faegre & Benson law firm expects different business coming their way in 2011.

The shift in focus opened up several issues that Faegre & Benson will be watching for their clients in 2011 and may provide an indication of the government's focus and plans moving forward. Some items to watch, according to the law firm include:

  • A decision from DOJ regarding the ongoing investigation of Monsanto

  • Any progress on reaching industry agreement on protocols for post-patent, generic competition in genetically modified seeds, of the sort suggested by Pioneer/DuPont, the American Antitrust Institute, and crop grower organizations

  • Any action DOJ may take by way of investigation or merger enforcement that will reveal the analysis it will apply to the information it heard at the hearings

  • Congressional oversight of USDA's proposed GIPSA regulations, perhaps including a mandatory comprehensive economic analysis

  • USDA's release of a final GIPSA rule.

Faegre & Benson serves businesses throughout the United States, Europe and Asia. Established in Minneapolis in 1886, the firm is one of the 100 largest law firms headquartered in the United States. Faegre & Benson represents many of the world's leading food, agriculture and biofuels companies and has more than 100 attorneys dedicated to serving them.

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