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Bayer wins Roundup trial in California

October 12, 2021 -  By

Chemical giant Bayer AG won its first trial claiming that Roundup active ingredient glyphosate causes cancer. The company plans to phase glyphosate out of its residential lawn and garden products by 2023.

A California jury agreed that glyphosate was not primarily responsible for lymphoma in a boy, Ezra Clark, exposed to the herbicide when his mother sprayed it on weeds.

“While we have great sympathy for Ezra Clark and his family, the jury carefully considered the science applicable to this case and determined that Roundup was not the cause of his illness,” Bayer told the Reuters news service.

In May, Bayer announced a 5-point plan to handle the 125,000 glyphosate cases it’s facing:

  1. Appeal the Hardeman v. Monsanto Bayer bought Monsanto’s agricultural business in 2018, including liability for the $80 million verdict in that suit. Bayer has appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn that ruling.
  2. Set up a $4.5 billion reserve to cover claims if the Supreme Court doesn’t hear its case or rules against Bayer.
  3. Settle cases: Bayer has settled about 96,000 cases out of court and is only going to trial if “demands of the hold-out plaintiff are unreasonable.”
  4. Phase out glyphosate from lawn and garden products. The company announced that step earlier this year and plans to sell glyphosate only for crop or professional use after 2023.
  5. Promote studies showing the safety of the chemical on a website it plans to launch by the end of 2021.

Plaintiff’s attorneys in the Clark case told Reuters that they are considering appealing the jury’s verdict.

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