Monsanto Closes Its Research Center In Bozeman - ABC FOX MONTANA NEWS, WEATHER, SPORTS - KTMF/KWYB

Monsanto Closes Its Research Center In Bozeman

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BOZEMAN -

Monsanto, the leading producer of genetically modified seed used in farming is closing their wheat production facility in Bozeman.

The facility researched and developed new wheat varieties. The company decided to merge its Bozeman location along with its other centers across the country in North Dakota, Arizona, Indiana and Kansas into one wheat technology center in Twin Falls, Idaho.

"The environment is very mild, irrigated and high yielding," said Jeff Koscelny, Monsanto U.S. Wheat Commercial Lead. "It's really a great location in the U.S. to do wheat breeding."

The company decided to open up a regional site in Great Falls.

"Great Falls seems to be a great location to locate that testing site because there is a tremendous amount of wheat production there," said Koscelny. "They would take the products coming out of the wheat technology center, do the research on a local level then ensure that those products are going to perform to the farmers expectations."

Montana State University does wheat seed research for Monsanto. Spokesman Tracy Ellig said he does not expect the university will be affected by the company's move out of the Gallatin Valley.

"It's been a great relationship and we except it to be moving forward in the future," said Ellig.

Koscelny said no one lost their jobs. All employees were offered the opportunity to move to their location in Idaho.

Monsanto has been located in Bozeman since 2009. In September, Congress did not renew the Monsanto Protection Act, which would have protected genetically modified crops.

Senator Jon Tester was pleased when the act did not pass. He said Congress stood up for accountability and transparency.

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