“A colleague and I at the CCF sometimes like to kick around the question, “Which are the top 10 worst decisions of the Supreme Court of Canada?”
One case that we always nominate is Monsanto Canada Inc. v. Schmeiser, 2004 SCC 34, where the Supreme Court held by a five-to-four majority that farmer Percy Schmeiser had infringed the patent of Monsanto after his canola field was accidentally contaminated with Monsanto’s patented, genetically modified (GMO) seed. The GMO seed was probably carried to Schmeiser’s field from neighbouring farms via the wind or insects, but however it arrived, it was without his knowledge or consent. Yet the decision held, essentially, that Monsanto owned his canola crop and he didn’t.
While the SCC took the sting out of the decision by holding that Schmeiser owed no damages to Monsanto, its decision on nevertheless set the stage for many problems down the road.
A new documentary “Percy Schmeiser: David v. Monsanto” by German filmmaker Bertram Verhaag is available for viewing free until November 10 at this website. Percy Schmeiser narrates the history of his court battle and explains the serious negative implications of this poorly reasoned court decision. I recommend this excellent film….”