On July 21, U.S. Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and Jeff Merkley (D-OR) led 17 senators in urging the U.S. Department of Justice Antitrust Division to conduct a thorough and impartial analysis of Bayer AG’s proposed $66 billion acquisition of Monsanto Company. The Antitrust Division must remain independent of political influence and carefully consider the impact this merger will have on agricultural businesses, farmers, and consumers. The senators warn that even the appearance that the President is open to involving himself in an individual law enforcement decision would undermine the integrity of antitrust enforcement.
According to the GM Crop Database, if the Bayer-Monsanto transaction is approved, just two companies would control over 60 percent of the genetic corn traits and almost 90 percent of soybean and cotton traits. Large scale consolidations in the agricultural inputs sector could also significantly reduce competition, limit seed options for farmers, and raise prices for both farmers and consumers.