Minnesota-based Cargill said in a statement that Syngenta had exposed the grain trader to losses by commercializing the Agrisure Viptera corn seed, known as MIR 162, before it was approved for import by China, a major buyer.

Since November, China has rejected imports of hundreds of thousands of tonnes of U.S. corn, including from vessels loaded by Cargill in Louisiana, due to the presence of the MIR 162 trait, according to the statement.

“Unlike other seed companies, Syngenta has not practiced responsible stewardship by broadly commercializing a new product before receiving approval from a key export market like China,” Mark Stonacek, president of Cargill Grain & Oilseed Supply Chain North America, said in the statement.

In April, Cargill said the rejection of U.S. corn shipments by China had contributed to a 28 percent drop in earnings for the quarter ended Feb. 28.

Syngenta Seeds is owned by Swiss-based Syngenta AG , the world’s largest crop chemicals company. A spokesman said the company would have a comment later on Friday. (Reporting by Tom Polansek; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn


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