Friday, November 18, 2005

Patents on Pigs?

Back in February, Monsanto filed two PCT applications, WO 2005/015989 ("method for genetic improvement of terminal boars") and WO 2005/017204 (this application concerns a gene sequence which leads to enhanced pork production). The applications have been published with international searches, and national applications are proposed throughout the world. In August, Greenpeace drew international attention to the Pig Patent, and launched a global campaign against the pig patents and what is described as "the latest attempt by Monsanto to monopolize a food source." Further sources and materials on the "pig patent" can be found on the Patenting Lives Resources page. These applications are of critical interest to the debate on "life patents" because even though technically they do not apply to the product - "the pig" - in practical terms this may well be the effect. That'll do, pig.

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