Bayer on Monday was ordered by a Northern jury in California to pay more than $2 billion to a couple who say they were diagnosed with cancer after using the company’s glyphosate-based weedkiller Roundup.
Shares of Bayer were down 5.9% in early trading on Tuesday.
The jury said the company’s product did not properly warn of its cancer risk.Bayer said in a statement it was disappointed with the jury’s decision and planned to appeal, adding that it “conflicts directly” with the Environmental Protection Agency’s finding that there are “no risks to public health from the current registered uses of glyphosate.”
“We have great sympathy for Mr. and Mrs. Pilliod, but the evidence in this case was clear that both have long histories of illnesses known to be substantial risk factors for non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), most NHL has no known cause, and there is not reliable scientific evidence to conclude that glyphosate-based herbicides were the ‘but for’ cause of their illnesses as the jury was required to find in this case,” the company said.
A spokesman also said: “Bayer believes the punitive verdict is excessive and unjustifiable.”
Roundup is a herbicide produced by Monsanto, which Bayer acquired last year for $63 billion. The company has denied allegations that its product causes cancer, saying that decades of studies and regulatory evaluations have shown the weedkiller to be safe for use.