“Pharmaceutical and chemical manufacturer Bayer is to pay $10.9 billion to settle cancer claims linked to its Roundup weedkiller.” [Source: BBC News (UK)]
Roundup, a glyphosate-based weedkiller produced by Bayer, has recently been subject to around 125,000 lawsuits in the United States from people who developed cancer. The filing of these lawsuits followed an announcement in 2015 by the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer that officially classified glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans”.
Fact is however that with this $10.9 billion settlement Bayer has essentially got off lightly. It has not admitted any guilt and will be free to continue selling Roundup. Adding insult to injury, a United States federal appeals court has recently blocked the state of California from requiring Bayer to label the weedkiller as cancer-causing.
But of course, Bayer has form with this sort of thing. In August 1991 it had to withdraw Baycol (also known as Lipobay), a cholesterol-lowering statin drug, after it was linked to the deaths of patients taking it. Similar to today, it eventually paid a total settlement of $4.2 billion and was allowed to stay in business.
Going further back, Bayer has an even darker history as a member of the infamous IG Farben Cartel. To read how managers and directors of Bayer and IG Farben were found guilty at the post-war Nuremberg trials of committing crimes including slavery and mass murder, visit the Profit Over Life website.