"Even though deep snowdrifts cover his fields in eastern Kansas, Luke Ulrich, a corn and soybean farmer here, is thinking about spring. It's time to buy seed again, but hundreds of seed companies have gone under in the past two decades.
Ulrich remembers the days before genetically modified seeds upended the industry. Critics of the big agriculture biotech company Monsanto say its popular Roundup Ready technology is to blame for that. Roundup Ready is a line of gene-modified seeds that inoculate plants against a herbicide, Roundup, also made by Monsanto, that kills just about everything else.
"Ever since they've come out with the Roundup Ready trait and that became popular and basically took over farming, we've seen significant increases every single year," Ulrich says."