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Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc. v. Holden Foundation Seeds, Inc.

United States District Court for the Southern District of Iowa
1987 WL 341211 (1987)


Facts

Pioneer Hi-Bred International (Pioneer) (plaintiff) was a company that created hybrid seed corn through genetic mixing. Pioneer sued Holden Foundation Seeds (Holden) (defendant), alleging that Holden had wrongfully acquired genetic information from some of Pioneer’s genetically modified seed lines for Holden’s own use. Pioneer claimed this violated Pioneer’s property rights in two ways. First, Pioneer argued Holden’s use of the genetic seed information was a misappropriation of Pioneer’s trade-secret information. Second, Pioneer argued Holden’s use of this genetic information was a conversion of Pioneer’s property rights in these modified genetic qualities.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (O’Brien, J.)

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