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Syngenta to Pay $1.5 Million for Bt 10 Distribution

Syngenta Seeds has agreed to pay a $1.5 million penalty to EPA for selling and distributing seed corn that contained an unregistered genetically engineered pesticide called Bt 10.

EPA says that there are no human health or environmental concerns with Bt 10 corn. Still, it is still illegal to distribute any pesticide not registered under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act.

Late in 2004, Syngenta disclosed to EPA that it may have distributed the seed corn to the United States, Europe, and South America. Immediately following the disclosure, U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and EPA began an investigation and evaluation that confirmed the distribution of unregistered seed corn on over 1000 occasions. A penalty was assessed by USDA and the company destroyed all the affected seed under USDA supervision.

One week before the payment agreement was announced, Syngenta said that Bruce Bissell, Head of Global Operations, and David Jones, Head of Business Development, would retire from Syngenta on February 28, 2007.

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