A federal court jury in Missouri returned a $1.5 million verdict in favor of farmers in Arkansas and Mississippi whose rice seeds were contaminated by a genetically altered strain, made by German conglomerate Bayer CropScience. There are three additional test cases scheduled to be tried this year involving farmers in Louisiana and Texas as well as a rice exporter. So far no punitive damages have been awarded by any of the jurors. The contamination slowed international orders for Arkansas rice, which in turn drove down the price.
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