Archer-Daniels-Midland refuses Syngenta GM Corn

Archer-Daniels-Midland Co. (ADM), the world’s largest corn processor, won’t accept a genetically modified version of the crop developed by Syngenta AG (SYNN) until its use has been approved by China and other major export markets.

The curb applies to grain containing the Agrisure Duracade genetic trait, which helps control rootworm. Decatur, Illinois-based ADM may test deliveries and said it’s advising farmers to check the seeds they will plant this spring.

“Wide-scale planting of traits that aren’t approved by key importing countries would diminish the competitiveness of American grain and feed exports,” Jackie Anderson, an ADM spokeswoman, said in an e-mailed statement today.

Corn imports into China, the second-biggest consumer of the grain, slumped 21 percent in January compared with the prior month after some shipments were rejected. In November Chinese inspectors started halting shipments of grain containing Viptera.

Staci Monson, a spokeswoman for Syngenta in the U.S., didn’t immediately respond to a voicemail seeking comment. Basel, Switzerland-based Syngenta said Feb. 5 it won’t halt sales of Duracade and Agrisure Viptera. The Viptera trait helps control a range of pests.

ADM said today it’s reserving the right to test deliveries and decline those that contain Duracade. It’s also asking producers and suppliers to provide advance notification if they’re intending to deliver products with Agrisure Viptera to the company’s U.S. interior elevators.

ADM is asking farmers to confirm that the seeds they intend to plant this spring are approved for all major export markets, including China. If not, ADM is encouraging them to check with their sales representative if their order can be exchanged for seeds that are approved for global use, Anderson said.

Shruti Date Singh. Bloomberg, January 27 2014

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