Latest Roundup lawsuits rope in a new defendant

New lawsuits against the herbicide Roundup also target another Missouri-based defendant: St. Louis advertising firm Osborn Barr, which marketed the product for years.

The 231 cases filed last week in the 22nd Circuit Court in St. Louis are among the latest to emerge against Monsanto, the Creve Coeur-based agribusiness company that developed the weedkiller and is listed as a co-defendant with Osborn Barr.

The filings echo hundreds of other active cases alleging that glyphosate, Roundup’s active ingredient, is carcinogenic and tied to cases of non-Hodgkin lymphoma — an association Monsanto strongly disputes and that is also the topic of competing findings of scientific groups assessing cancer risk.

While existing lawsuits focus on holding Monsanto liable for cancer allegedly linked to glyphosate, the inclusion of the advertising agency that helped market Roundup is a different approach in the legal battle, according to the prominent environmental attorney Robert F. Kennedy Jr., who is working with a Los Angeles law office, Baum Hedlund, Aristei & Goldman, on the cases.

The filings on behalf of 136 plaintiffs argue that for two decades, Osborn Barr represented Roundup as a product that created “no unreasonable risks to human health or the environment.” According to the cases, “deceptive” claims included ads that portrayed Roundup as being “safer than table salt” and “practically nontoxic.” The filings say that a 1996 court agreement in New York barred Monsanto from running those and similar advertisements in the state.

Read more: St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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