These days Monsanto is shorthand for, as NPR’s Dan Charles has put it, “lots of things that some people love to hate”: Genetically modified crops, which Monsanto invented. Seed patents, which Monsanto has fought to defend. Herbicides such as Monsanto’s Roundup, which protesters have sharply criticized for its possible health risks. Big agriculture in general, of which Monsanto was the reviled figurehead.
And soon Monsanto will be no more.
Bayer, the German pharmaceutical giant and pesticide powerhouse, announced in 2016 it would be buying Monsanto in an all-cash deal for more than $60 billion.
Now, as the merger approaches, Bayer has confirmedwhat many suspected: In the merger, the politically charged name “Monsanto” will be disappearing.
The combined company will be known simply as Bayer, while product names will remain the same.