Cargill, Monsanto Reach Agreement on International Seed Business

Oct 20, 1999, 01:00 ET from Monsanto Company

    MINNEAPOLIS, Oct. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Cargill and Monsanto (NYSE:   MTC)
 announced today that they have reached an agreement that resolves problems
 related to Monsanto's purchase of Cargill's international seed business last
     Under the agreement, Cargill compensated Monsanto for lost germplasm (the
 reproductive tissue of seeds) and other expenses associated with the problems
 that were uncovered in Cargill's international seed business.  The settlement
 was included in a reserve taken in the fourth quarter of Cargill's 1998-99
 fiscal year.
     Monsanto acquired Cargill's international seed business in October 1998
 for $1.4 billion.  The sale involved temperate and tropical corn and other
 crops, but did not include Cargill's North American seed business.
     Cargill discovered the problems during an investigation into allegations
 by Pioneer Hi-Bred International that Cargill had wrongly obtained some
 Pioneer genetic material.  Pioneer filed suit against Cargill in October 1998,
 after Monsanto's acquisition of Cargill's international seed business. Pioneer
 later filed suit against Monsanto, claiming that some of Pioneer's genetic
 material was included in Cargill's international seed business.
     "We have been very open and forthright with Pioneer and Monsanto from the
 moment we discovered the problem and have worked with both companies to remedy
 the situation," said Fritz Corrigan, president of Cargill's Agriculture and
 Biosciences Group.  "Both Cargill and Monsanto have thoroughly investigated
 the problem to ensure that any material that should not be for sale has been
 removed from our research program and the market.  We deeply regret the
 situation and are pleased that we have reached this agreement."
     "It's unfortunate that some problem areas have been identified in the
 Cargill assets we acquired," said Monsanto President Hendrik Verfaillie.
 "However, we're pleased that a suitable arrangement has been agreed upon by
 both companies, and we look forward to furthering our strong business
 relationship with Cargill."
     Cargill is an international marketer, processor and distributor of
 agricultural, food, financial and industrial products with 82,000 employees in
 59 countries.
     Monsanto is a life sciences company, committed to finding solutions to the
 growing global needs for food and health by sharing common forms of science
 and technology among agriculture, nutrition and health.  The company's
 31,800 employees worldwide make and market high-value agricultural products,
 pharmaceuticals and food ingredients.

SOURCE Monsanto Company