Roundup, which is a weed killer produced by the company called Monsanto, is by far the most successful weed killer ever produced. From its inception, there were some concerns about it because of Monsanto being involved in the creation of Agent Orange which was used during the Vietnam war. Despite this fact, the company has maintained that it is a very safe product and there are many users of the product who would say the same. Even so, there have been increasing amounts of Roundup weedkiller litigation around the country because of its possible link to some cancers.
Facts About Monsanto Roundup Weedkiller Litigation
The company Monsanto has been recently bought out by Bayer which is a German-based corporation. The merger of these two companies initially caused it’s stock prices to rise but this did not stop the onslaught of thousands of plaintiffs bringing lawsuits against them. There are some estimates that conclude it would take as much as $6 billion dollars to settle these cases.
As more and more evidence becomes clear that high exposure to this weed killer is likely causing the development of some cancers, it is disturbing that Bayer, which makes cancer medications, is now the proud owner of a company whose most profitable product is linked to causing cancer. These links are likely the cause of the company shares plummeting by almost 40% after rising just after the merger. There is so much controversy over this matter that even the executives at Bayer that were responsible for the merger of these two companies are in jeopardy of losing their positions.
2 Billion Dollar Lawsuit Awarded To A Couple
An elderly couple who did residential landscaping over the course of 30 years and routinely used Roundup developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The jury believed that their exposure to the product over those three decades played a major role in the development of their cancer. For this reason, they awarded the couple a 2 billion dollar settlement in punitive damages as well as an additional $55 million dollars to help cover their medical expenses and for their personal pain and suffering.
According to Bayer, which now owns Monsanto, it is their opinion that the couple had long had other risk factors that made them susceptible to this cancer and it was because of those factors that they ultimately developed their condition in their elder years. They went on to say that the main ingredient glyphosate, has a long reputation of being used safely all over the world. For this reason, they have every intention of appealing this substantial verdict.
One of the big reasons that the jury came back with such a large settlement in this matter was due to Monsanto’s on internal documents that showed clear evidence the company has never been concerned with the safety of Roundup but rather the focus was put on discrediting any science that suggested it was unsafe. The attorneys presented evidence that demonstrated the company put millions of dollars in discrediting any science that threatened the sales of this product rather than investing in good science that could prove one way or the other whether or not the product was indeed safe. This led to the third lawsuit that the company has lost in the state of California.
Just within this state, they have previously lost a case that awarded the plaintiff over 78 million dollars and still another that awarded over 80 million dollars to another plaintiff. In both of those cases just as in the 2 billion dollar award, the plaintiffs had developed non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma. In each of these cases, the plaintiffs had used the product over a prolonged period of time. It is believed that the heavy exposure these individuals experienced led to the development of their cancer.
The Monsanto Roundup Weedkiller Litigation Has Battered The Stock Price Of Bayer
Bayer purchased Monsanto for the princely price of $63 billion dollars. Some top executives still claim that it was the right choice for the company. They say that they will fight these claims and they are making efforts to re-establish consumer trust. Even so, there is mounting evidence against the safety of this highly profitable product and if that mounting evidence continues growing then the company is likely to continue seeing more and more lawsuits brought against them, not just in the US, but worldwide.