Bayer-Global Announces Removal of Carcinogen from Roundup Weed Killer

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Bayer officials announced on Thursday that they are removing the chemical glyphosate from their Roundup Weed Killer products after years of litigation regarding the product.

Though the Environmental Protection Agency and other agencies have claimed it is safe, not all experts agree that it is not a carcinogen, even when properly used.

There are thousands of Roundup lawsuits Bayer inherited when they bought Monsanto in 2018. Many of those cases are from people claiming that glyphosate causes non-Hodgins lymphoma, a type of cancer.

The International Agency for Research concluded that glyphosate might indeed be a carcinogen.

Instead of taking responsibility for the harm their product has caused, Bayer has instead refused to take the blame as they set aside billions of dollars to cover potential lawsuits.

They have made it clear that they are more concerned about their bottom dollar than about the health complications and side effects of their product.

They’ve only decided to change the ingredients to reduce litigation and risk — not because of any potential health risk.

“We want to provide comfort to our investors that the glyphosate litigation exposure should now be reasonably accounted for,” CEO Werner Baumann said. “This clarity should also allow informed investors to direct their focus on operational performance, the quality of Bayer’s businesses, and its intrinsic value.”

The removal of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, will occur for the U.S. consumer market sometime in 2023. Bayer said the new version of the weedkiller would rely on “alternative active ingredients” and require EPA approval.

They’ve set aside an additional $4.5 billion to come on top of the $11.6 billion that Bayer has previously pledged to fight and settle the Roundup litigation. They’ve lost lower court cases and hope that the Supreme Court will hear them out.

This is unlikely as the Supreme Court would have to overturn an earlier ruling to grant judgment in favor of Bayer.

Though Bayer has attempted to dodge lawsuits and has made it clear that the removal of glyphosate is an unwanted and forced move, it’s a massive win for consumers.

“Bayer’s decision to end U.S. residential sale[s] of Roundup is a historic victory for public health and the environment,” said executive director of the Center for Food Safety (CFS) Andrew Kimbrell.

“As agricultural, large-scale use of this toxic pesticide continues,” he added, “our farmworkers remain at risk. It’s time for EPA to act and ban glyphosate for all uses.”

Others feel that 2023 is too long to wait for the removal of the poison.

Kendra Klein, the senior scientist at Friends of the Earth, expressed that “action on this toxic weedkiller can’t wait until 2023. Major home and garden retailers like Home Depot and Lowe’s must lead the industry by ending the sales of Roundup immediately.”

“Massive amounts of glyphosate will continue to be sprayed in parks, schools, and on food crops,” she added. “Retailers and regulators must act now to ban this cancer-linked weedkiller.”

 

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