The European Commission gave green light to the Bayer-Monsanto merger

Despite the mobilisation of the civil society, the European Commission approved the acquisition of Monsanto by Bayer on 21 March. Because the merger ‘creates the largest global integrated seed and pesticide player’, the European Commission asked for some guaranties that there ‘will be effective competition and innovation in seeds, pesticides and digital agriculture markets also after this merger’. To do so, Bayer and Monsanto will have to sell off some of their assets related to seeds and pesticides. Before being effective, this merger still needs to obtain the approval from other international markets.

This decision of the European Commission takes place in a context of already high concentration in the agrifood sector. The European Commission already gave its green light for two other mergers: Dow and Dupont, ChemChina and Syngenta. The three companies that would result from these mergers would represent 70% of the agrochemicals industry and would hold 60% of seeds property. In that context, and despite the few guaranties required, the optimism of the European Commission for an effective competition is difficult to share…

For more information about the concentration of power in the agri-food sector, read the IPES-Food report ‘Too big to feed’.

 

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