U.S. verdict on Roundup cancer case batters Bayer share price

U.S. verdict on Roundup cancer case batters Bayer share price

"Following the state court decision past year, we saw a huge uptick in local ordinances that would regulate the use of Roundup on playgrounds, schoolyards and public parks", said PIRG's Kara Cook-Schultz, who leads a campaign to ban Roundup.

Jurors in federal glyphosate multidistrict litigation in San Francisco found that that use of glyphosate caused non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in the plaintiff, Edwin Hardeman.

Mr Hardeman's lawyers said they would show evidence of Monsanto's "bad conduct" in the next stage of the trial.

Bayer faces a total of 11,200 United States cases over Roundup and the outcome of Hardeman's case - which has not yet brought damages against the agrochemicals giant - has been closely watched for an indication if payouts to the others could snowball into the billions. Bayer does not provide sales figures for the product.

Monsanto, which has sold Roundup worldwide for more than 40 years, contends that scores of studies show the products are not risky if properly used.

By 11:20 am in Frankfurt (1020 GMT), the shares were trading down 13.2 percent at 60.53 euros ($68.71), dragging down the DAX index of blue-chip German shares.

Johnson was originally awarded $289 million in damages - mostly to punish Monsanto - but a California judge reduced the jury's award to $78 million.

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A U.S. jury has found that one of the world's most widely-used weedkillers was a "substantial factor" in causing a man's cancer. In August, another San Francisco jury determined Roundup had caused cancer in a former groundskeeper. The first was two years before he was diagnosed with cancer. The jury found that it was on Tuesday.

"We will only really know whether it works for Bayer to isolate scientific issues once we see more trials", said Adam Zimmerman, a law professor focusing on mass torts at Los Angeles-based Loyola Law School.

Chhabria has scheduled another bellwether trial for May and a third trial is likely to take place this year.

Bayer said the jury's verdict Tuesday "has no impact on future cases and trials because each one has its own factual and legal circumstances". His lawsuit is the first federal court case against Bayer's Roundup and could predict the outcome of hundreds of cases that the company faces for similar claims.

The UN Food and Agriculture Organization and the World Health Organization say glyphosate is "unlikely to pose a carcinogenic risk to humans from exposure through the diet", a view shared by the EU Food Safety Authority and the European Chemicals Agency.

Litzenburg said he and other attorneys have more than 4,000 similar cases awaiting trial in various state courts. The New York Times reported that they show how Monsanto systematically attempted to discredit scientists and independent scientific research, swayed scientists at the Environmental Protection Agency over its review of glyphosate, and even ghostwrote stories that appeared to be authored by scientists not affiliated with Monsanto.

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