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Nebraska Farmers Sue Aventis on StarLink Contamination

Friday February 2, 5:33 pm Eastern Time

Nebraska farmers file StarLink corn lawsuit

CHICAGO, Feb 2 (Reuters) - Farmers in Nebraska have filed a class-action
lawsuit against life sciences company Aventis CropScience (NYSE:AVE - news),
the maker of an unapproved gene-altered corn that caused turmoil by entering
the food chain.

New York attorney Daniel Krasner said Friday his clients' crops were
contaminated by StarLink corn, which is not approved for human consumption
because of concerns it might trigger allergic reactions, but was detected in
food products.

``It is part of a lawsuit brought by a group of farmers against Aventis,
growing out of the StarLink problem. The value of their corn crop diminished
as a result,'' he said, adding that the lawsuit was filed Wednesday.

A spokesperson for Aventis declined to comment because of the pending
litigation.

Farmers in Iowa and Illinois have filed similar lawsuits, claiming they
suffered financially from the cross pollination and commingling of StarLink
corn with regular varieties.

StarLink corn, originally developed to be resistant to the European corn
borer insect pest, is allowed as animal feed.

Traces of the corn were discovered in taco shells in September, leading to a
series of food recalls. StarLink was also detected in food items in Japan
and South Korea, touching off a sharp decline in their imports of U.S. corn.

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