Glyphosate block fails

21 August 1998

Glyphosate block fails

AN attempt by Monsanto to prevent the sale of a generic total herbicide based on glyphosate, the same active ingredient as used in the companys Roundup, has failed.

The subject of Monsantos attentions was Clayton Plant Protection, a Dublin-based agrochemicals company. The firm was granted a UK MAFF licence in February to sell its own generic formulation of glyphosate, Rhizeup. Monsantos patent on the molecule ran out in 1991.

But Monsanto argued that Claytons license was illegal, since it was based on a fast-track registration using Monsanto data. Although access to that data was allowed, since protection ran out in 1996, Monsanto maintained EU regulations also demanded up-to-date information. It requested the ban until the outcome of an EU judicial review relating to licensing procedure was known.

Lord Justice Rose rejected Monsantos claim on a number of grounds, including the potential restriction on free competition and that availability of such a product was in the public interest since it could help to lower prices.

Tom OMahony, Claytons managing director, said a successful ruling for Monsanto would have excluded other small independent companies from entering the generic glyphosate market, and would have restricted UK farmers choice. &#42

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