Published: November 29, 2023

Category: Glyphosate Controversy

Bayer is on a losing streak in its trials over Roundup weedkiller’s link to cancer. In November, a Missouri jury ordered Bayer to pay $1.56 billion to four plaintiffs who claimed the company’s Roundup herbicide caused cancer.

In the past two months, Bayer has lost four such trials with damages totaling more than $2 billion with most of that total being for punitive damages resulting from Bayer’s Monsanto business being grossly negligent.

The jury in Cole County Missouri found that Monsanto was liable to claims of negligence, design defects, and failing to warn plaintiffs of the potential dangers of using Roundup.

The jury awarded plaintiffs Valorie Gunther of New York, Jimmy Draeger of Missouri, and Daniel Anderson of California a combined $61.1 million in compensatory damages and $500 million each in punitive damages.

Bart Rankin, an attorney at Forrest Weldon which represented the plaintiffs, said in a statement the victory was the first of many on behalf of thousands of plaintiffs.

To date, some 165,000 claims have been made against the Bayer for personal injuries allegedly caused by Roundup, which Bayer acquired as part of its $63 billion purchase of Monsanto in 2018.

In 2020, Bayer settled most of the then-pending Roundup cases for up to $10.9 billion. Around 50,000 claims remain pending.

As a result of the latest court defeat, Bayer stock suffered its biggest drop ever, losing $8.3 billion in market value.

Bayer’s mounting legal problems, which they inherited from Monsanto, have led the company’s CEO Bill Anderson to consider breaking up the pharmaceutical and agriculture company.

Sources: Reuters and Fortune

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Organic & Non-GMO Insights December 2023