French Court Affirmed Monsanto’s Guilt In Chemical Poisoning

Meet Lasso! It’s totally safe for you, though

By Heather Callaghan

For years, chemical companies have tried to peddle their products as something benevolent to human beings provided there is proper use. What happens when typical use winds up in a poisoning through inhalation?

A French farmer says he suffered neurological problems, memory loss, headaches and speech problems after air exposure to Monsanto’s Lasso weedkiller in 2004. A court upheld the man’s claim in a 2012 case and a recent court has sustained that ruling.

Yahoo Finance reports on the Lyon/Paris case:

[Reuters]…The decision by an appeal court in Lyon, southeast France, confirmed the initial judgment, the first such case heard in court in France, that ruled Monsanto was “responsible” for the intoxication and ordered the company to “fully compensate” grain grower Paul Francois.

Of course, Monsanto is appealing the case to the highest French court.

Lasso is a pre-emergent soil-applied herbicide herbicide that has been in use since the 1960s. Francois says Monsanto failed to provide a warning label alerting people to the possible side effects he suffered, and studies started to surface that the product had links to serious human health problems. Monsanto claims and has always held that “experts, including those nominated by the French civil court, had not found any causal link between the alleged accidental exposure and the alleged damages for which Francois claims compensation.”

Coincidentally, in 2007, three years after Francois’ poisoning, France banned the use of Lasso following similar bans from Canada, Belgium and Britain. Monsanto’s French spokesperson claimed that Lasso was phased out in the U.S. a few years ago for “commercial” reasons.

Incredibly, a lawyer for Monsanto said:

…He already received indemnities (by insurers) and there is a fundamental rule that says that one does not compensate twice for a loss, if any,

Of course, it wouldn’t be Monsanto compensating twice – it would be insurance paid into to by the farmer.

Whether it’s farmers globally or a single farmer victimized by the goods of Monsanto – the biotech giant’s approach is deny, deny, deny. Seeing as they have been so “truthful” and concerned about human and environmental health in their hundred years of existence – what’s not to love?

Heather Callaghan is an independent researcher, natural health blogger and food freedom activist. You can see her work at and Like at Facebook.

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