Bayer announces $10 billion Roundup settlement
When Bayer bought Monsanto about two years ago, the deal came with product liability litigation related to Roundup, the most popular weed killer in the U.S.
On June 24, Bayer said it agreed to settle some 100,000 claims, to the tune of more than $10 billion.
Roundup contains glyphosate, which is the subject of controversy over its safety.
The International Agency for Research on Cancer in 2015 announced that the chemical probably causes cancer, a claim denied strenuously by Monsanto and Bayer. And the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency earlier this year in an Interim Registration Review Decision concluded that glyphosate is safe and not a cancer-causing chemical.
The CEO of Bayer, Werner Baumann, said Wednesday that the $10 billion settlement is the right move to bring a long period of uncertainty to an end.
“The decision to resolve the Roundup litigation enables us to focus fully on the critical supply of healthcare and food,” he said. “It will also return the conversation about the safety and utility of glyphosate-based herbicides to the scientific and regulatory arena and to the full body of science.”
The settlement resolves most but not all current claims. It also puts in place a process to handle any future litigation, according to Bayer.
Bayer described the complicated settlement structure here.
“It is financially reasonable when viewed against the significant financial risks of continued, multi-year litigation and the related impacts to our reputation and to our business,” Baumann said.
The IARC’s determination that glyphosate was “probably carcinogenic to humans,” put the chemical on the same list with other “probable” items, including beef, pork and mobile phone use. The IARC stopped short of declaring glyphosate “carcinogenic to humans.” The latter list includes red wine, bacon and tobacco.
In its settlement, Bayer did not admit any wrongdoing or liability.
Bayer bought Monsanto for $63 billion in 2018.