The Supreme Court has rejected Bayer’s appeal to shut down thousands of lawsuits claiming its Roundup weedkiller causes cancer.
The justices on Tuesday left in place a $25 million judgment in favor of Edwin Hardeman, who says he developed cancer from using Roundup for decades to treat poison oak, overgrowth and weeds on his San Francisco Bay Area property.
Hardeman’s lawsuit had served as a test case for thousands of similar lawsuits. The high court’s action comes amid a series of court fights over Roundup that have pointed in different directions. Bayer argued federal regulators have repeatedly determined its products are safe.
The German pharmaceutical company inherited Roundup when it acquired Monsanto in 2018.
Agriculture groups including the American Farm Bureau Federation, American Soybean Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Association of Wheat Growers, and National Cotton Council issued the following statement:
“We are disappointed the Supreme Court has decided not to hear this case, which has significant implications for our global food supply and science-based regulation. With the conflict in Ukraine threatening food security around the world and the persistent dangers posed by climate change, too much is on the line to allow the emergence of an unscientific patchwork of state pesticide labels that would threaten grower access to tools needed for productive, sustainable farming. We will be discussing the implications of the court’s announcement and will determine what reforms may be needed to ensure a patchwork of state labels does not jeopardize grower access to these vital tools or science-based pesticide regulation.”
The groups will be considering today’s decision and what additional reforms may be needed to prevent a patchwork of state labeling requirements from disrupting commerce and undermining science-based pesticide regulation.