Tuesday, August 24, 2004

That's MY Organism, Thank you!

WOW! I had no idea this type of litigation went on but it seems that Kenya is suing Proctor & Gamble because they stole a rare organism from their country, cloned it millions of times over, then made billions from it.

KWS Seeks Millions From Procter & Gamble
The East African

The action could put a halt to illegal extraction of Kenya's biological resources, particularly those with huge industrial potential

THE KENYA Wildlife Service (KWS) is seeking a share of the hundreds of millions of dollars generated from the sales of a popular detergent and a bleaching agent manufactured in the US whose active ingredients were acquired in Kenya illegally.

With assistance from scientists at the International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology (Icipe), KWS has launched a claim for a share of the proceeds accruing to the US multinational giant Procter & Gamble and to Genencor International BV of the Netherlands with respect to the sales of Tide Alternative Bleach Detergent and "stonewashing" material.

According to information made available to The EastAfrican, Genencor was the company that discovered "extremophiles" (tiny organisms that are able to survive and thrive in extreme environmental conditions) in Kenya, cloned and later sold them to Procter & Gamble, which used them as critical ingredients in the manufacture of the detergent.

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