Monsanto has been found guilty of poisoning a French farmer.
A Lyon, France, appeals upheld a 2012 ruling in which a judge had found the biotech company “responsible” for poisoning the French grain grower, who suffered neurological problems after using the Lasso weedkiller, Reuters reported.
While Monsanto vows to appeal the ruling, the farmer and advocates for organic growing protections around the world are rejoicing.
The French farmer, Paul Francois, testified that the weedkiller caused him to suffer from neurological problems after the chemical was inhaled during use. Lasso was phased out by Monsanto in the United States several years ago.
Francois told the court that he suffered from memory loss and headaches and stammering after inhaling Lasso in 2004, Reuters said. The farmer blamed Monsanto for neglecting to place on its containers sufficient warnings about proper use of and the dangers of the chemical.
When the initial ruling was handed down, the farmer’s attorney called it a “historic decision in so far as it is the first time that a (pesticide) maker is found guilty of such a poisoning.”
Monsanto believes it eventually will win the case on appeal.
“We disagree with the court’s decision and are planning to appeal it,” a representative for Monsanto told The Daily Meal after the latest ruling in September. “Furthermore, there hasn’t yet been a court decision on the damages the claimant alleged he suffered. We agree with the court-designated medical experts that none of the health conditions alleged by the claimant may have been caused by the alleged accident.”
Lasso weedkiller was created during the 1960s and was intended for use in combating broadleaf weeds and other unwanted plants commonly found on farmland. Government officials in France banned the use of the Monsanto product in 2007, and Canada, Great Britain and Belgium soon followed suit.
Lasso is not the only controversial Monsanto product.
Earlier this year the World Health Organization stated that glyphosate – used by Monsanto in Roundup — is “probably carcinogenic to humans.” As previously reported by Off The Grid News, some researchers believe that not only is glyphosate potentially harmful to humans and unborn babies, but feel it could be a root cause in the alarming number of honeybee deaths.
The company says rather stringent steps need to be taken before, during and after the use of Roundup.
“When using Roundup do not eat, drink or smoke,” the company says. “Wash hands thoroughly after handling or contact. Thoroughly clean equipment after use. Do not contaminate drains, sewers and waterways when disposing of equipment rinse water.”
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