Herbicide Faces Three Class Action Lawsuits in Canada over Alleged Carcinogenic Effects

A group of Canadians affected by cancer have blamed the condition on exposure to a weed killer, and have filed three class action lawsuits through lawyers against Bayer and Monsanto, the manufacturers, alleging that they endangered lives knowingly.

The statements of claim have been filed in the provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, and Alberta, and all of them allege that the pharmaceutical giant and its subsidiary based out of Germany had acted with reckless disregard for the safety of Canadians. The cases refer to the sales of the herbicide named Roundup, and are among a string of lawsuits around the world, all of which have been denied by Bayer and Monsanto.

Jeremy Diamond, a lawyer on the case, spoke about the lawsuit: “I stand here before you with several representative plaintiffs in the class whose lives have been dramatically and permanently altered due to the actions of the defendants. Other individuals have unfortunately already passed away due to cancer and their estate is involved in this litigation.”

World Health Organization Classified Herbicide Ingredient as Carcinogen

Cumulatively, the 3 suits have yet to be certified as class actions. On the whole, the suits are seeking more than $500 million in damages. A branch of the WHO has classified glyphosate, which is an active ingredient in Roundup as probable cause of cancer. On the other hand, Health Canada has allowed the sale of the product.

The 3 suits allege that Monsanto, has submitted ghost written scientific papers to Health Canada in an effort to get the product declared as safe. Mr. Diamond stated: “We believe the defendants withheld the risks of cancer and other health risks by secretly ghostwriting scientific journal articles provided to Health Canada. Studies that were provided to regulatory authorities in relation to the product safety were falsified, misleading and included manipulated control groups. It is also our belief that the defendants negligently tested the product and failed to warn of the risks.”

A similar allegation of ghost writing was made in a United States court in 2017, which was backed up by internal emails of the company.