By Carey Gillam
After brief deliberations, a St. Louis jury on Thursday sided with Monsanto in the latest Roundup cancer trial. The win puts Monsanto and its German owner Bayer AG at five trials won versus three won by plaintiffs. The jury took only a few hours to reach the defense verdict.
The decision in favor of the company came after a lawyer for three cancer patients failed to convince jurors that his clients’ exposure to Monsanto herbicides caused their illnesses, as a lawyer for the company insisted that scientific evidence proves the products are safe.
The five-week trial closed as it began – with starkly different presentations about decades of scientific studies about glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup weed killer and other herbicides, and with evidence about Monsanto efforts to thwart concerns that its products might cause cancer.
The case is part of the sprawling nationwide litigation that began in 2015 after the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classified glyphosate as a probable human carcinogen. More than 100,000 people in the US have brought claims alleging they developed non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL) after long-term use of Monsanto’s glyphosate-based herbicides, including Roundup.
Bayer, which bought Monsanto in 2018, has settled the majority of the cases, but this was the eighth to go to trial. Many more are scheduled over the next several months and into next year.