A federal tribunal in Brazil has said it has suspended a ban on the sale of Monsanto’s genetically modified Roundup Ready soybeans in the country.


One of the tribunal’s judges, Selene Maria de Almeida, said the ban would be suspended until the court makes its final judgement on the issue, reported Reuters.


“The ban on the planting and sale of Roundup Ready, without legal or scientific basis, meant for the sixth successive crop consumers have had transgenic soy without realising it because it wasn’t labelled,” Maria de Almeida was quoted by Reuters as saying.


The ban had been in place since 2000, when Brazilian consumer watchdog Idec and environmental group Greenpeace filed a motion in court that put a stop to the legal sale of Roundup Ready soybeans in Brazil.


Some farm groups welcomed the decision.


“It will help Brazilian producers,” said Macel Caixeta, vice president of the Brazilian Agricultural and Livestock Confederation (CNA). “It’s important that we have conventional and transgenic soy in order to compete on the world market.”


IDEC’s executive coordinator, Marilena Lanzzarini, however, said the watchdog would appeal the decision.


“The arguments (of the judge) are economically and politically based,” Lanzzarini said. “They cannot displace the juridical fundamentals … that are related to the protection of health, environment and consumers’ right to information.”