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02.08.2017 |

Bayer-Monsanto Merger is a Bad Deal for Vegetable Farmers

OSA continues to join farmer, consumer, and rural advocacy organizations in urging the US Department of Justice (DOJ) to block the proposed merger between Bayer and Monsanto.

In a letter sent today to DOJ two dozen groups detailed the potential anticompetitive effects of the proposed $66 billion merger on the vegetable seed market. The proposed deal would join the world’s largest and fourth largest vegetable seed companies and would further consolidate the already highly concentrated vegetable seed industry (see Table 1). If this merger goes through, farmers will likely pay more for a diminished array of seed options. Vegetable seed prices have increased tremendously alongside mega-mergers in the vegetable seed industry (see Figure 2).

Today, the largest vegetable seed companies are vertically integrated firms that research and breed varieties, multiply and manufacture seeds, and distribute and market seeds to farmers. Only a few vegetable seed companies dominate the market for each commercial vegetable crop (see Figure 1), and these companies are primarily interested in a relatively narrow set of high-value vegetables.

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