With all the literally life threatening news that is coming out from Washington DC and our various state capitols this little item nearly slipped through unnoticed Late Wednesday night / early Thursday morning.
Bayer agrees to $10.9bn settlement over Monsanto’s weedkiller Roundup
“German pharmaceutical company Bayer says it’s paying up to $10.9bn to settle a lawsuit over subsidiary Monsanto’s weedkiller Roundup, which has faced numerous lawsuits over claims it causes cancer.
Bayer said it was also paying up $1.22bn to settle two further cases, one involving polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) in water.
Bayer said the Roundup settlement would “bring closure to approximately 75%” of the current 125,000 filed and unfiled claims. The resolution also puts in place a mechanism to resolve potential future claims, the company said.
“First and foremost, the Roundup settlement is the right action at the right time for Bayer to bring a long period of uncertainty to an end,” said Werner Baumann, CEO of Bayer, in a statement on Wednesday.”
With Iowa being a major farming state this should be of interest to most Iowans. While I have no idea what the penetration of Roundup and Roundup Ready crops is in Iowa it is no doubt significant.
The other interesting aspect to this settlement is that when the Bayer and Monsanto merger was finalized slightly over 2 years ago it was controversial.
With the merger of Bayer and Monsanto farmers were left with only three companies that would be able to take care of farmers need for seed and pesticides – Bayer, Syngenta -China and Dupont-Dow.
At the time of their merger Monsanto was up to its eyeballs in lawsuits. This settlement takes care of about 75% of the lawsuits.
Monsanto has made several very controversial products over the years. Part of this settlement included some settlement on other Monsanto lawsuits: (also from the Guardian)
“Bayer said it would also pay up to $400m to settle cases involving the weedkiller dicamba having drifted onto plants that weren’t bred to resist it, killing them.
A further payment of up to $820m will be made to settle “most” claims for exposure to PCB, a highly carcinogenic substance, that Monsanto produced until 1977 and which has been found in US waters.”
Once again time and circumstances makes what was once seen as major news into so much background music.