About “Beyond the Rows”

Beyond the Rows is a Monsanto Company blog focused on one of the world’s most important industries, agriculture. Monsanto employees write about Monsanto’s business, the agriculture industry, and the farmer.
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Human Rights: From Farm to Fashion Featured Article

By Brian Lowry

Last month, I was fortunate to participate in a community event that explored human rights issues in virtually every step of cotton’s journey from seed to clothing. The event, “Human Rights: From Farm to Fashion,” was co-sponsored by Monsanto and six area universities and open to the public. More than 200 individuals, many of them college students, attended.

Puvan Selvanathan, a member of the United Nations Working Group on Business and Human Rights and the U.N. Human Rights Council, served as keynote speaker and master of ceremonies. The day featured presentations and discussions from more than a … Full Article »

The Ballot Initiative in Jackson County, Oregon Featured Article

By Lisa Drake
Government Affairs 

Like many companies, we often advocate for policies we think are sound, and oppose those we think are not.  And that advocacy sometimes includes support for campaigns about ballot initiatives. 

For instance, we recently were part of a coalition that opposed state ballot initiatives in California and Washington State that would have imposed complex and confusing requirements for the mandatory labeling of GMO foods.  We contributed a total of about $13.5 million to support coalitions that opposed these measures, while the total spent by those who shared our concerns was about $66 million. Like us, … Full Article »

Seed Processing Expands in Hungary, Romania and Turkey Featured Article

Ribbon cutting ceremony in MKL, Turkey

Monsanto this month held inaugural events to mark the expansion of its seed processing plants in Hungary, Romania, and Turkey. More than 1,000 Monsanto employees, local and national government officials, contractors, suppliers, growers, farmers and journalists attended the inauguration events.

The events also highlighted a significant improvement in the environmental profile of our seed production plants with the introduction of corn cob burners that will cut our production-related energy bills and carbon emissions in half.

The events kicked off in Sinesti, Romania on Monday, Nov. 4. The $32 million investment will produce an additional … Full Article »

Using Discarded Corn Seed for Fuel Featured Article

As we work to increase our sustainability efforts, we are examining innovative ways to reduce the environmental footprint of our sites. From recycling efforts to emissions, we’re constantly looking for ways to reduce and reuse our materials.

In 2007, our manufacturing operation located at the Muscatine, Iowa, plant began using discarded corn seed as supplemental fuel in their coal-fired boiler. Normally, this seed is shipped to third party incinerators or landfills to be destroyed or disposed of.

The Muscatine team found that they could burn the seed on premise, and the results were outstanding.  Since 2007, the plant has been … Full Article »

Monsanto Completes Expansion at Vegetable Seed Research Headquarters Featured Article

Monsanto announced today the completion of a $31 million expansion at the company’s vegetable seed research headquarters in Woodland, California.  The expansion, which included the building of a 90,000 square-foot state-of-the-art laboratory and office building, makes the location Monsanto’s primary site for molecular breeding of vegetable seeds.  The expansion, unveiled today during a special open house, also makes Woodland’slab the largest of its kind in the world for vegetable seed health testing.

“The space and resources this expansion brings to Woodland will allow us to increase our research and help farmers everywhere grow more new, exciting products for the world’s … Full Article »

Monsanto’s Business in Europe Featured Article

Some recent reports are suggesting—again!—that Monsanto is withdrawing from business activities in Europe. The opposite is true. We’re actually expanding our operations in the conventional seed business in Europe, and will continue to sell Europe’s only successful commercial biotech crop, our MON810 corn, to farmers in several European countries. But we’ll no longer be pursuing approvals for cultivation of new biotech crops in Europe. Instead, we’ll focus on enabling imports of biotech crops into the EU and expanding our current business, particularly in Eastern Europe.

Monsanto´s business in Europe is very strong and growing. To better serve farmers in Europe, … Full Article »

Tomatoes in Tight Spaces: Sprouting the Seeds Featured Article

By Amalia
Vegetables Division

Growing plants from seed has always seemed a little too scary for me to attempt, so you can imagine my trepidation at the thought of trying to grow seeds and then blogging about it.  What if I couldn’t get them to grow?  But I really wanted to try growing the varieties I learned about from our Home Garden Sales Lead, John Marchese –   Debut for the fantastic flavor and  Yaqui for  home canning and sauce –  both perfectly suited to the pots on my deck.  John had offered to try to get me some transplants … Full Article »

Monsanto’s Seminis Home Garden Seed Business Featured Article

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, … Full Article »

Bowman v. Monsanto: Major Implications for Innovation Featured Article

The U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments today in Bowman v. Monsanto, a case that highlights the crucial role that patent protection plays in fostering and protecting U.S. innovation across a broad range of industries—including agriculture, medicine, computer software, and environmental science—that deliver benefits to millions of Americans.

Monsanto’s arguments to the Court underscored the role that patent rights play in enabling innovation in biotechnology and other fields where breakthrough discoveries require substantial R&D investments that depend upon the protections afforded under U.S. patent law.

“Today’s case highlights the importance of intellectual property protection in supporting America’s continued investments in … Full Article »

Supreme Court to Hear Saved Seed Case Bowman v Monsanto Featured Article

The United States Supreme Court agreed Friday to hear the court case Bowman v. Monsanto that explored whether Monsanto’s intellectual property rights extend to second generation seeds. 

In a brief statement to the press, the company said:

The key issue in Bowman v. Monsanto was whether Monsanto’s intellectual property rights extend to second generation seeds. The infringer argued that Monsanto’s patent rights in seeds obtained from a grain elevator that were harvested by other farmers had been exhausted.  The district court rejected this argument and awarded damages to Monsanto for the infringement. The Federal Circuit affirmed, holding that Monsanto’s intellectual

Full Article »