On May 31 world media headlines read similar to this from Reuters: “Monsanto backing away from GMO crops in Europe.” The original source for the story is attributed to a German left daily, TAZ which printed excerpts from an interview with an official spokeswoman of Monsanto Germany.
“We’ve come to the conclusion that this has no broad acceptance at the moment.”
“Aktuell überschlagen sich die Medien mit der Nachricht, dass Monsanto die Vermarktung von gentechnisch verbessertem Saatgut in Deutschland und Europa eingestellt haben soll.
Das stimmt so nicht. Monsanto bietet schon seit einigen Jahren nur dort gentechnisch verbesserte Sorten an, wo ein funktionierendes Zulassungssystem und breite Unterstützung auf landwirtschaftlicher und politischer Ebene für die Technologie vorhanden ist. Aber grundsätzlich ist es richtig, dass Monsanto sich in Deutschland und Europa auf die Züchtung und Verkauf von konventionellem Saatgut und Pflanzenschutzmitteln konzentriert.” 
”Right now the media is flooded with reports that Monsanto has stopped the marketing of GMO seeds in Germany and the EU. That is not correct…”
“We have a robust business selling high-quality, conventional corn, oilseed rape and vegetable seeds to our farmer customers in Europe. We’ve been telling people in Europe for several years now that we’ll only sell biotech seeds where they enjoy broad farmer support, broad political support and a functioning regulatory system. These conditions apply only to a few countries in Europe today, primarily Spain and Portugal. As Hugh Grant, our CEO told the Financial Times in 2009, ‘Europe’s going to make up its own mind in its own time.’ The only GM trait grown in Europe today is a corn resistant to the European corn borer, an insect that can do considerable damage to crops. Its cultivation accounts for less than 1% of the all corn cultivated in Europe (by hectares).” 
The German statement is a bit different from the US version. It officially denies as false the press reports that they have ceased marketing of GMO seeds in the EU.
Their statement that they concentrate on breeding and sale of conventional seeds and plant protection chemicals is nothing other than a description of what the present status of Monsanto sales in the EU, nothing more. Because of the limited use so far of Monsanto GMO seeds in the EU, Monsanto business by definition is focuses now where it earns money.
The timing of the TAZ interview is suggestive of what seems to be a carefully orchestrated Monsanto PR deception campaign.
Sieg für Anti-Gentech-Bewegung: Monsanto gibt Europa auf(Victory for anti-GMO Movement: Monsanto Gives up Europe).
But the NGOs who formally oppose GMO were reportedly nowhere to be found as sponsors or even reportedly as active organizers.
All indications are that the timing of the well-formulated TAZ interview, notably with a left newspaper openly opposed to Monsanto GMO, was an orchestrated attempt to “manage perceptions” and take the headwind out of the sails of the growing anti-GMO sentiment in the EU and abroad.
“like a Burson & Marsteller tactic that applies to many controversial bad practices and part of why it works is that it takes a long time to build consumer/activist energy and momentum, whereas the PR-company can start on a very short runway …”
The geopolitical stakes behind Monsantoand the attempt to control the world’s most vital seeds of lifeare far too highfor the company to raise the white flag of surrender so easily.