Quantcast

Beekeepers File Legal Complaint Against Bayer Over Glyphosate in Honey

GMO
Pexels

Bayer, which recently wrapped up its takeover of Monsanto, now owns glyphosate and the liabilities surrounding it.


Last Thursday, the same day the $63 billion acquisition closed, a beekeeping cooperative in northern France filed a legal complaint against the German chemical giant after the controversial weedkiller was detected in honey produced by one of its members, AFP reported.

Famille Michaud, one of France's largest honey marketers, found the chemical in three batches supplied by one of its members, according to Jean-Marie Camus, the head of the 200-member beekeeping union, L'Abeille de l'Aisne.

"They systematically analyze the honey shipments they receive, and they found glyphosate," Camus told AFP.

Vincent Michaud, president of Famille Michaud, confirmed to AFP that "we regularly detect foreign substances, including glyphosate." He noted that if glyphosate is found, the supplier's entire shipment is rejected.

The supplier of the tainted honey lives near an area of field crops, including rapeseed, beets and sunflowers, Emmanuel Ludot, a lawyer for the cooperative, explained to AFP.

"But you also can't forget the weekend gardeners who often tend to use Roundup," he added, referring to Monsanto's widely used glyphosate-based herbicide brand.

The initiators of the legal complaint hope their action will open an investigation that will determine the percentage of glyphosate in honey batches and whether the contamination could lead to any health consequences for consumers.

"It's also a matter of knowing how widespread this might be. Famille Michaud tells me this isn't an isolated case," Ludot said.

In 2015, the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer classified the substance as "probably carcinogenic," although Monsanto and other scientific panels, including the European Food Safety Authority, disagree.

In November, a majority of European Union member states voted to renew the license for the product for five years. French President Emmanuel Macron, however, has vowed to ban glyphosate within three years.

Bayer told French publication Le Figaro that it was informed about the legal complaint by the press and "no judicial information has been notified to date."

Monsanto faces more than 2,000 lawsuits in the U.S. alone over Roundup cancer claims. As German newspaper Handelsblatt Global noted, "Bayer is pointing to studies that suggest glyphosate is safe, but this will likely not spare Monsanto, and therefore Bayer, incalculable costs in terms of financial resources and time spent on legal proceedings."

Bayer, whose mega-merger with Monsanto has created the world's largest seed and chemical company, will retire the St. Louis-based corporation's 117-year-old name.

"Bayer will remain the company name. Monsanto will no longer be a company name. The acquired products will retain their brand names and become part of the Bayer portfolio," the firm announced.

Critics have dubbed the purchase as a "merger from hell," over fears that the integrated company will use its dominance in one product to push sales of other products.

Show Comments ()

EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

PhotoAlto / Laurence Mouton / Getty Images

By Ana Reisdorf, MS, RD

You've probably heard the buzz around collagen supplements and your skin by now. But is the hype really that promising? After all, research has pointed to both the benefits and downsides of collagen supplements — and for many beauty-conscious folk, collagen isn't vegan.

Read More Show Less
Pixabay

By Marlene Cimons

Neil Pederson's introduction to tree rings came from a "sweet and kindly" college instructor, who nevertheless was "one of the most boring professors I'd ever experienced," Pederson said. "I swore tree rings off then and there." But they kept coming back to haunt him.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Aerial view of the explosion site of a chemical factory on March 22 in Yancheng, Jiangsu Province of China. Caixin Media / VCG / Getty Images)

At least 47 people have died in an explosion at a plant in Yancheng, China Thursday run by a chemical company with a history of environmental violations, Sky News reported.

Read More Show Less
A fishmonger in Elmina, a fishing port in the Central Region of Ghana. Environmental Justice Foundation

By Daisy Brickhill

Each morning, men living in fishing communities along Ghana's coastline push off in search of the day's catch. But when the boats come back to shore, it's the women who take over.

Read More Show Less
Pexels

By Sam Nickerson

Links between excess sugar in your diet and disease have been well-documented, but new research by Harvard's School of Public Health might make you even more wary of that next soda: it could increase your risk of an early death.

The study, published this week in the American Heart Association's journal Circulation, found that drinking one or two sugar-sweetened beverages (SSBs) each day — like sodas or sports drinks — increases risk of an early death by 14 percent.

Read More Show Less
Sponsored
Krystal B / Flickr

Tyson Foods is recalling approximately 69,093 pounds of frozen chicken strips because they may have been contaminated with pieces of metal, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced Thursday.

The affected products were fully-cooked "Buffalo Style" and "Crispy" chicken strips with a "use by" date of Nov. 30, 2019 and an establishment number of "P-7221" on the back of the package.

"FSIS is concerned that some product may be in consumers' freezers," the recall notice said. "Consumers who have purchased these products are urged not to consume them. These products should be thrown away or returned to the place of purchase."

Read More Show Less
Pixabay

By Hrefna Palsdottir, MS

Cold cereals are an easy, convenient food.

Read More Show Less
A tractor spraying a field with pesticides in Orem, Utah. Aqua Mechanical / CC BY 2.0

Environmental exposure to pesticides, both before birth and during the first year of life, has been linked to an increased risk of developing autism spectrum disorder, according to the largest epidemiological study to date on the connection.

The study, published Wednesday in BMJ, found that pregnant women who lived within 2,000 meters (approximately 1.2 miles) of a highly-sprayed agricultural area in California had children who were 10 to 16 percent more likely to develop autism and 30 percent more likely to develop severe autism that impacted their intellectual ability. If the children were exposed to pesticides during their first year of life, the risk they would develop autism went up to 50 percent.

Read More Show Less