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Amid increasing concerns about the side effects of exposure to Roundup and other glyphosate-based pesticides, which have been linked to reports of non-Hodgkins lymphoma and other cancers, a growing number of food manufacturers are seeking certifications designed to assure consumers that their products are “Glyphosate-Free”.
The Detox Project, a Europe-based research and certification group, is providing Glyphosate Residue Free certifications for ingredients, as well as single and multi-ingredient food products, and a growing number of companies in the U.S. and around the world are taking part in the program.
To date, about 30 brands and 300 products have received a “Glyphosate-Free” certification, and at least two dozen more are undergoing the process. Many of the companies with certifications are organic food or dietary supplement companies, such as Tosi, Heavenly Organics and Purium.
The Detox Project certification project calls for products to undergo testing by a third-party accredited laboratory three times a year. The products must be free of glyphosate residue down to government-recognized limits of detection for food, commodity and supplement samples, which is usually 0.01 parts per million.
The group certifies single ingredients from suppliers, single-ingredient food and supplement products sold to consumers, and multi-ingredient food and supplement products sold to consumers.
The growing interest in glyphosate-free certification comes as Bayer and it’s recently-acquired subsidiary, Monsanto, face more than 11,000 Roundup lawsuits brought by farmers, landscapers, and other consumers diagnosed with cancer following exposure to the controversial weedkiller.
Last month, the first federal bellwether case ended in an $80 million verdict, after the jury found that Roundup was a substantial cause of the plaintiff’s non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
That verdict came only a few months after a California state court jury awarded $289 million in damages to a former school groundskeeper diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma following regular exposure to Roundup. While the judge presiding over that case subsequently reduced the verdict to $78 million, the two awards have provided a clear indication about the extent of liability Bayer may face if it fails to negotiate a settlement or resolution for the claims.
In addition to the federal cases, Bayer and Monsanto are still expected to face a number of state court trials throughout the remainder of 2019.
In California, a trial is currently underway involving a husband and wife who were each diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma following exposure to Roundup. The couple was granted an expedited trial date since they are both dying from the cancer, and the jury is expected to return a verdict early next month.
A number of cases are also expected to go before Missouri juries this summer and fall, as the vast majority of Roundup claims are currently pending in Missouri state court, where Monsanto’s U.S. headquarters were located.