Seed World

Deere Takes Legal Action to Protect Product Patents

Deere & Company took legal action against Precision Planting LLC and AGCO Corporation, claiming that the companies have infringed on 12 John Deere patents.

The Deere patents relate to several of the unique and inventive aspects of John Deere planting equipment, many of which are embodied in the state-of-the-art technology Deere has named ExactEmerge.

Deere filed the complaint in the United States District Court in Delaware, asserting that it has suffered damages because of the infringement and will continue to suffer such damages if the infringement continues.

The lawsuit states that products made or sold by Precision Planting, including vSet seed meters along with SpeedTube products, infringe on Deere patents. AGCO acquired Precision Planting in September 2017.

The inventions protected by Deere’s patents allow farmers to achieve accurate seed placement, uniform seed spacing, and even crop emergence while planting at higher speeds than had been possible in the past.

Introduced by Deere in 2014, the breakthrough ExactEmerge planter addressed the limitations of earlier equipment, relying on innovative features that allow growers to plant corn and soybean seeds at speeds up to about 10 miles per hour, about double the long-thought limit, while delivering accurate seed placement and spacing.

The technology reduces planting time, minimizes waste, and improves production yields, thereby helping the grower to improve profit margins. Deere states in the court filing that it has not licensed or otherwise authorized use of its patents by Precision Planting or AGCO.