- Lawsuit Filed After Monsanto Weedkiller Found in Cereal
- November 16, 2018
NOVEMBER 15, 2018 Herbicide glyphosate, recently ruled as contributing to a plaintiff’s lymphoma, detected in popular breakfast foods.
A Florida woman has filed a lawsuit claiming General Mills failed to warn consumers about the weedkiller glyphosate in its cereals. Glyphosate is the same herbicide at the center of a landmark verdict ordering agrochemical company Monsanto to pay $289 million in damages to a school’s groundskeeper whose cancer it deemed resulted from exposure to the chemical. In the current case, the plaintiff claims that she would never have purchased the cereals if she had known that they contained glyphosate. Her suit cites a recent study that detected varying levels of the herbicide in the cereals.
What is Glyphosate?
Glyphosate is an herbicide applied to the leaves of vegetation to kill broadleaf plants and grasses. Used to regulate plant growth and ripen fruit, glyphosate is the active ingredient in Monsanto’s widely-used weedkiller, Roundup. Glyphosate is the most used herbicide in the world. The chemical is used in both agriculture and forestry, on lawns, and in gardens. The recent study, conducted by the Environmental Working Group (EWG), looked at 45 oat-based food products. Of the 45 products studied, 43 were found to contain glyphosate. Of the 43 products that tested positive, 31 tested at levels above what EWG scientists consider safe for children’s health; that’s roughly three-fourths of the sample.
The World Health Organization has classified glyphosate as a probable human carcinogen and linked it to non-Hodgkin lymphoma in humans. Studies have shown that even low levels of glyphosate may be harmful to human health. Studies also show that children are more susceptible to harm from carcinogens due to their still-developing immune systems. Despite these alarming findings, glyphosate is increasingly sprayed on oats just prior to harvesting––the same oats that are the major ingredient in Cheerios and other cereals.
Companies are well aware that crops are sprayed with glyphosate but have refrained from informing consumers until being forced to by the revelation of the EWG’s findings. In effect, companies have been restricting the consumer’s ability to make a personal choice with respect to their health and putting them in potential danger.