A federal judge in Kansas awarded $218 million to a group of 7,000 Kansas farmers who alleged that Swiss agribusiness giant Syngenta (SYT)  introduced genetically engineered corn seeds that wrecked the farmers' business.

The farmers alleged Syngenta introduced the engineered corn seed in the U.S. before it got approval for import in China. The loss of the important Chinese export market caused corn prices to drop in 2016.

The Kansas verdict came after a three-week trial in which four farmers represented the 7,000 total who claim to have been affected. A Minnesota trial will begin next week with about 60,000 farmers from that state.

Syngenta shares were slightly up in midday trading.

What's Hot On TheStreet:

Well OK then, Jeff Immelt: General Electric's (GE) outgoing CEO Jeff Immelt had some choice things to say at an event in NYC on Thursday night, TheStreet's Kinsey Grant reports. First, Immelt revealed a possibly fatal management mistake Kroger's (KR) CEO might have made about Amazon (AMZN) who as we all know, just inked a $13.7 billion deal for organic grocer Whole Foods (WFM) . Immelt then took a jab at Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama for not visiting factories in their push to lift manufacturing wages. Talk about a well-paid boss going down swinging.

Why Sears Canada is dying: Sears Canada (SRSC) has one foot in the grave just like its ailing U.S. friend Sears Holdings Corp. (SHLD) . Unfortunately for Sears Canada, it's that friend across the boarder that has played a large role in its demise, TheStreet's Michelle Lodge reports. Sears has sucked badly needed cash away from Sears Canada through the years, leaving it unable to upgrade stores and do other things to compete effectively in the always challenging Canadian retail market.

General Electric is a holding in Jim Cramer's Action Alerts PLUS Charitable Trust Portfolio. Want to be alerted before Cramer buys or sells GE? Learn more now.

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