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Malevolent

MONSANTO ABOUT TO BE GIVEN A TASTE OF ITS OWN MEDICINE?

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 Malevolent    1,947

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An oligopoly takes shape to corner the human food supply.

The hunter, it seems, has become the hunted. After wresting control of roughly a quarter of the global seeds market by acquiring a massive portfolio of seed companies, including Agroceres, Asgrow, Cristiani Burkard, Dekalb, Delta & Pine and the seeds division of Cargill North America, Monsanto now suddenly finds itself on the menu of two very powerful, much bigger rivals.

On Thursday, it was reported that Germany’s two chemical-industry titans Bayer and BASF, both of which have a market capitalization more than double Monsanto’s, are mulling a takeover bid.

REAPING A WHIRLWIND

In many ways, Monsanto has only itself to blame. When it launched a hostile bid for Swiss-based pesticides behemoth Syngenta last year, it sparked a massive consolidation race in the agrochemical industry. In the end it was the Chinese state-owned giant ChemChina that walked away with the spoils, at a dizzying price of €43 billion.

It was the largest corporate takeover of Chinese history and it sent a clear signal of China’s intention to become a global player in the GMO market. In a speech in late 2014, the President of China Xi Jinping said that China “cannot let foreign companies dominate the GMO market.”

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