Glyphosate Probably Carcinogenic
The World Health Organization recently declared glyphosate in Roundup a “probable human carcinogen.” Glyphosate has been linked to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL), chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL), and other subsets of NHL. Monsanto faces Roundup Cancer Lawsuits as a result.
Related story: Monsanto must face Roundup Cancer Lawsuit.
Nature Valley claims its bars are made with “100% natural whole grain oats.” However, tests performed by plaintiffs revealed the bars include glyphosate (at no extra charge). Organic Consumers Association, Moms Across America and Beyond Pesticides filed the lawsuit as a result, charging that General Mills failed to reveal the glyphosate contamination.
Monsanto sued for False Advertising
In a related matter, Monsanto has also been sued for false advertising. The biotech bully from Missouri claims glyphosate targets an enzyme found only in plants and not in people or animals; but irrefutable evidence – for anyone taking five minutes to study the subject – shows that this is a blatantly false claim.
Glyphosate is the world’s most widely produced insecticide, or, as Monsanto would have, “herbicide.” Glyphosate is used not for health benefits, but to increase crop yields, says the lawsuit.
The suit alleges General Mills has violated the District of Columbia Consumer Protection Procedures Act. The three groups said that General Mills made the (allegedly) false statements with the intention of customers relying on them.
100% Natural Meaningless Term?
“As a mother, when I read ‘100% Natural’ I would expect that to mean no synthetic or toxic chemicals at all,” said Zen Honeycutt, Moms Across America executive director. “Glyphosate is a toxic chemical that the EPA recognizes as a ‘reproductive effector’ which ‘can cause liver and kidney damage’ and ‘digestive effects.’ It is unacceptable that Nature Valley granola bars contain any amount of this chemical.”
The suit seeks a declaration that the conduct of General Mills is a violation of D.C. law, as well as an injunction and corrective advertising, along with attorney fees and other costs.
General Mills Responds
“We stand behind our products and the accuracy of our labels,” General Mills spokesmodel Mike Siemienas told Law360 August 25.
General Mills Products laced with Glyphosate?
The lawsuit names several General Mills breakfast and snack foods contaminated with glyphosate. These include different flavors of crunchy granola bars; trail mix chewy granola bars; sweet and salty nut granola bars; breakfast biscuits; biscuits; oatmeal squares, bars and bistro cups.
The three groups say General Mills failed to disclose the glyphosate in company products. An independent laboratory – using liquid chromatography mass spectrometry – found glyphosate to be 0.45 parts per million, said the lawsuit. The groups opine that the glyphosate contamination likely comes from the granola bars’ oat products.
People seek “Natural” Foods
The lawsuit says that more than half of 1,005 people in a recent Consumer Reports National Research Center study said they seek out foods labeled “natural.”
General Mills’ False Labeling
The three non profits say the label in this case contains several false claims: “natural,” “made with 100% natural whole grain oats,” and “healthy.”
The groups said: “Because of the adverse health effects of glyphosate, which are becoming more widely known, the products are not ‘healthy.’”
Besides being a probable human carcinogen, glyphosate could also affect the human immune system, say’s the groups’ petition. Glyphosate disrupts the shikimate pathway, which exist in so-called “gut bacteria.” It can also cause liver and kidney damage, says the groups.
The three non profit groups are represented by Kim E. Richman of the Richman Law Group, Tracy D. Rezvani of Rezvani Volin P.C., and Beth E. Terrell and Erika L. Nusser of Terrell Marshall Law Group PLLC.
The case is Organic Consumers Association et al v. General Mills, Inc., case number 2016 CA 006309 B in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia civil division.