Statement on McKivsion
On January 26, 2024, a jury reached a verdict in favor of the plaintiff in the McKivison Roundup™ product liability trial in the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas. Our statement:
“We disagree with the jury’s adverse verdict that conflicts with the overwhelming weight of scientific evidence and worldwide regulatory and scientific assessments, and believe that we have strong arguments on appeal to get this verdict overturned and the unconstitutionally excessive damage award eliminated or reduced; previous damage awards have been reduced by more than 90% overall in final judgments. We have a winning record in the Roundup litigation – having won 10 of the last 16 cases at trial – and have resolved the majority of claims filed in this litigation. The Company remains committed to taking cases to trial, as our track record demonstrates that we win when plaintiffs’ attorneys and their experts are not allowed to misrepresent the worldwide regulatory and scientific assessments that continue to support the products’ safety. This verdict is also at odds with a recent decision by the U.S District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana granting the Company’s motion for summary judgment in Whalen, a similar Roundup case, because plaintiffs lacked reliable evidence required to prove their case.”
The McKivison trial occurred in the #1 Judicial Hellhole® for 2023-2024, the Philadelphia Court of Common Pleas, and was marred by a number of significant errors at trial:
- Plaintiff’s counsel was permitted to conduct unrestrained cross examination of Company witnesses, including asking our experts prejudicial lines of questioning on documents they had never seen before, as well as questions on matters wholly irrelevant to the central issue in this case – whether Roundup is carcinogenic.
- During trial, defendants moved for a mistrial after the Court improperly sustained plaintiff’s objections to the testimony of a Company scientist, and struck a large portion of the defendant’s direct examination on topics directly relevant to the central issue in the case – whether Roundup is carcinogenic.
While we have great sympathy for the plaintiff in this case, we are confident that our products can be used safely and are not carcinogenic, consistent with the assessments of expert regulators worldwide. Recently, the EU Commission announced that it re-approved glyphosate for 10 years, following the favorable scientific assessments by its health and safety agencies, including the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) and European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which ‘did not identify any critical areas of concern’ impacting public health or the environment in their review of glyphosate in July 2023. On November 7, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit found California’s Proposition 65 warning for glyphosate to be unconstitutional, stating in their opinion ‘IARC stands essentially alone in its determination that glyphosate is probably carcinogenic to humans, while EPA, OEHHA, and regulators from around the world conclude that it is not.