Monsanto Co's attempt to buy southern seed giant Delta & Pine Land could be running into trouble as an unusual backlash against the proposed combination is taking root across the U.S. Farm Belt, the Wall Street Journal reported on its Web site on Monday.
Monsanto, the world's leading developer of biotech crops, said in August that it would buy Delta and Pine Land Co., the top U.S. seller of cotton seeds, for $1.5 billion in a deal that would give Monsanto a dominant position in the $40 billion cotton seed market.
The deal would give Monsanto more control over a major crop by a biotechnology company than ever before allowed, a prospect that upsets anti-biotechnology activists, the WSJ reported.
Some biotech-industry leaders are prodding the attorneys general of several states to look into the combination as an antitrust review by the Justice Department extends into its fourth month, the paper said.
Monsanto was not immediately available for comment.