Spring has arrived in the northern hemisphere, and home gardeners are itching to plant their favorite fruit and vegetable varieties in their backyard gardens. Monsanto sells fruits and vegetable seeds through its subsidiary, Seminis Vegetable Seeds, for commercial farmers and home gardeners. Here’s a quick Q&A about the Seminis home garden business.
What is Seminis?
Seminis Vegetable Seeds, Inc. (“Seminis”) has grown to be the world’s largest developer, grower and marketer of vegetable seeds. Monsanto purchased the Seminis business in 2005. Seminis offers seed for commercial farmers and home gardeners. For the home garden market, Seminis offers bean, broccoli, cabbage, carrot, cauliflower, cucumber, eggplant, lettuce, melons, onion, peas, peppers, spinach, sweet corn, tomato and watermelon seed.
Does Seminis sell or produce fruit and vegetable seeds for home gardeners?
Monsanto has a home garden business that operates through its subsidiary, Seminis. These seeds are available for purchase by home garden customers through seed dealers and plant raisers. Monsanto does not sell direct to home gardeners and you won’t see our brand or the Seminis brand on any of those seeds sold to consumers.
Are the home garden seeds genetically modified (GM)?
No. Monsanto does not offer genetically modified vegetable seeds for the home garden market.
If I plant your seeds, can I save the seeds from the veggies and replant them?
The seeds from the fruit produced will be viable for a second season, and Monsanto does not prohibit nor require its home garden wholesalers to place restrictions on saving seeds for replanting in the home garden market. However, Seminis hybrid garden seeds are developed by obtaining desirable traits from two or more parent lines in order to obtain the end variety. Although viable, saved seed from hybrids often do not produce a crop that is true to type or as dependable as the purchased hybrid seed.
I hear you sue people who replant your seeds. Are you going to sue me for saving seeds and replanting them?
No, Monsanto will not sue you for replanting seeds from our home garden varieties.
I’ve heard there are a few fruits and vegetables that are GM? What are those?
There are three vegetables with varieties that were produced via genetic modification: papaya (virus resistant), squash (virus resistant) and sweet corn (insect resistant and herbicide resistant). Monsanto sells sweet corn and squash. If someone tells you there is GM sunflower seed or GM birdseed or GM strawberries, they are incorrect.