With dairy processors large and small refusing to accept milk from cows treated with rBST, Monsanto has stepped up its farmer-based defense campaign, and is petitioning the FDA to prevent processors from making label claims.

Last month Monsanto filed a complaint and submitted petitions signed by hundreds of farmers, industry professionals and consumers, asking that processors be blocked from placing messages on labels that Monsanto claims are false or misleading.

Monsanto has sued individual dairies in the past, particularly if they have gone beyond simply informing consumers that the milk is produced without the use of synthetic hormones. As a result some have made changes to their messages.