USDA Opens Public Comment Period for Genuity Roundup Ready Sugarbeets


Although 95 percent of the 2010 U.S. sugarbeet crop was genetically modified Genuity® Roundup Ready® sugarbeets, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is engaged in an ongoing legal battle with several advocacy groups that have used the courts to block any additional planting of biotech sugarbeets. On November 4, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), an office within the USDA, published a draft environmental assessment (EA) in the Federal Register. This document analyzes alternatives available to APHIS for authorizing the cultivation of Genuity Roundup Ready sugarbeets in 2011. APHIS must issue special guidelines to authorize any interim planting of Genuity Roundup Ready sugarbeets while APHIS completes a court-ordered environmental impact statement and then makes a final decision.

APHIS has opened a 30-day public comment period until December 6, during which it will accept input from interested parties on the EA and the alternatives. All interested parties – such as dealers, retailers, agricultural organizations, farmers, and university professors to name a few – should consider weighing in.

The protection of growers' freedom to choose to plant Genuity Roundup Ready sugarbeets is important to the future of all agricultural biotechnology.

The Support Sugar Beets website is an excellent source of background information on the comment process. In addition, the How You Can Help section at the bottom of the site’s opening page offers step-by-step guidance in submitting a comment to USDA.

For additional background on the USDA’s evaluation of Genuity Roundup Ready sugarbeets’ environmental impact, visit the Genuity Roundup Ready sugarbeets page in our Issues & Answers section.


Monsanto Company is a member of Excellence Through Stewardship® (ETS). Monsanto products are commercialized in accordance with ETS Product Launch Stewardship Guidance, and in compliance with Monsanto’s Policy for Commercialization of Biotechnology-Derived Plant Products in Commodity Crops. This product has been approved for import into key export markets with functioning regulatory systems. Any crop or material produced from this product can only be exported to, or used, processed or sold in countries where all necessary regulatory approvals have been granted. It is a violation of national and international law to move material containing biotech traits across boundaries into nations where import is not permitted. Growers should talk to their grain handler or product purchaser to confirm their buying position for this product. Excellence Through Stewardship® is a registered trademark of Biotechnology Industry Organization.

ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW PESTICIDE LABEL DIRECTIONS. Roundup Ready® crops contain genes that confer tolerance to glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup® brand agricultural herbicides. Roundup® brand agricultural herbicides will kill crops that are not tolerant to glyphosate. Genuity®, Genuity and Design®, Genuity Icons, Roundup®, and Roundup Ready® are trademarks of Monsanto Technology LLC. ©2010 Monsanto Company.