A California jury found in favor of a man who said his cancer was caused by exposure Roundup, a weed killer. The verdict on Tuesday is further evidence that glyphosate, the herbicide’s active ingredient, is carcinogenic to humans, said Environmental Working Group President Ken Cook.
The jury agreed with evidence presented by the attorneys for Edward Hardeman in Edward Hardeman v. Monsanto Co. that glyphosate was the cause of his non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
“Today’s verdict reinforces what another jury found last year, and what scientists with the state of California and the World Health Organization have concluded: Glyphosate causes cancer in people,” said Cook.
Bayer AG, which bought Monsanto last year for $63 billion, faces more than 11,000 U.S. lawsuits alleging that glyphosate causes cancer.
Hardeman’s lawyers, in the second phase of the trial, will present evidence to the jury, including internal Monsanto documents, that could show the company knew the dangers of Roundup and glyphosate and attempted to cover them up. In the trial’s second phase, jurors will consider the issue of liability and damages.
Judge Vincent Chhabria, the presiding officer in Hardeman’s case, unsealed some of those documents in March 2017. The New York Times reported that they show how Monsanto systematically attempted to discredit scientists and independent scientific research, swayed scientists at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency over its review of glyphosate, and even ghostwrote stories that appeared to be written by scientists not affiliated with Monsanto.
Another California jury awarded Dewayne Lee Johnson, a groundskeeper who used Roundup in his former work, $289 million in his Monsanto case in August. The verdict was later reduced to $78 million.
Glyphosate, the world’s most heavily used herbicide, is exposing the public to the cancer-causing chemical through food in addition to exposing agricultural and landscaping workers.
Glyphosate was found in nearly every sample of oat-based cereals and other oat-based food, often eaten by children, in two sets of laboratory tests commissioned last year by the EWG. Several of the cereals and breakfast bars were made by General Mills and Quaker.