French court bans Monsanto weedkiller on safety grounds
Published: January 29, 2019
Category: Pesticide Hazards, The Organic & Non-GMO Report Newsletter
A French court recently canceled the license for one of Monsanto’s glyphosate-based weedkillers over safety concerns and placed an immediate ban on Roundup Pro 360 in the latest setback for the Bayer-owned business.
Germany-based Bayer, which bought Monsanto for $63 billion last year, faces more than 9,000 lawsuits by people who say the company’s Roundup and Ranger Pro herbicides caused their cancers.
A court in Lyon in southeast France ruled that the approval of Roundup Pro 360 granted by French environment agency ANSES in 2017 failed to take into account potential health risks.
The court said ANSES had not respected a precautionary principle in French law by not conducting a specific evaluation of health risks for Roundup Pro 360.
“Despite the European Union’s approval of the active substance (glyphosate), the court considered that scientific studies and animal experiments showed Roundup Pro 360 … is a potentially carcinogenic product for humans, suspected of being toxic for human reproduction and for aquatic organisms,” the court said in a summary of its ruling.
“This is a great first, which must be repeated,” Corinne Lepage, a former French environment minister and member of environment association CRIIGEN that brought the court case, said of the ruling on Twitter.
Bayer disagreed with the ruling and is considering its legal options.
The company is appealing a first U.S. court ruling that awarded $78 million in damages to a school groundskeeper from California.
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