Researchers estimate that agriculture and related industries contribute a whopping $136 billion to the economy of Pennsylvania every year, as the state is a key producer of several important crops and agricultural commodities.
Farming supports 1 in 10 jobs in our state, and the impact of agriculture is felt strongly throughout every Pennsylvania county. The state’s deep roots in agriculture and how important it is to our modern economy helps explain why so many people across Pennsylvania are becoming increasingly concerned for their health due to their exposure to glyphosate, a popular weed killer product that’s used widely in agriculture as well as at-home weed removal.
Glyphosate, which is the active ingredient in the name brand herbicide Roundup, is at the center of a medical, legal and regulatory controversy over whether it’s safe for humans to use or whether, as two separate juries have found, it causes non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
For those in Pennsylvania who have used or been exposed to Roundup and/or glyphosate and have developed or been diagnosed with a serious health problem, you should learn more about the subject and what rights you might have.
Glyphosate Use in Pennsylvania
Estimates from the U.S. Geological Survey indicate that about 2.3 million pounds of glyphosate were used in agricultural operations in 2016, which is down slightly from the high recorded in 2013. While more recent numbers have trended down, the state has seen a nearly 2,100 percent increase in glyphosate use since 1992.
Glyphosate is used on a wide variety of crops nationally, but just two crops (corn and soybeans) account for the majority of glyphosate used in the United States, and this largely tracks with how usage of the herbicide broke down in our state in 2016:
- Corn: 57%
- Soybeans: 39%
- Fruits & veggies: 1%
- Orchards & grapes: 1%
- Alfalfa: 1%
- All other crops: 1%
Pennsylvania is a top 20 state in many of the crops that are commonly treated with glyphosate both here and around the country, including grain corn (16th), soybeans (20th) and silage corn (6th).
The increase in glyphosate use in Pennsylvania is certainly an eye-popping figure, but it still depicts only a portion of the full picture of glyphosate’s presence in the state since the USGS data only accounts for pesticides and herbicides used in farming operations. This is limiting because Roundup is enormously popular for at-home gardeners as well as professional landscapers and groundskeepers.
The following graph shows the amount of glyphosate applied countrywide. The state of Pennsylvania clearly is impacted by its agricultural application.
Pennsylvania Residents at Risk
So far, two jury verdicts in California have gone the way of the plaintiffs who alleged that they contracted non-Hodgkin lymphoma as a direct result of their exposure to glyphosate. Both men personally applied glyphosate to weeds and came into direct contact with the liquid on their skins, and they both used Roundup for years.
While Pennsylvanians with histories like those are certainly those at the greatest health risk due to glyphosate, the reality is that all people in our state are likely to have had some exposure to the herbicide because of its widespread use and the fact that trace amounts of it have been detected consistently in the food supply. Multiple rounds of testing, including some by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, have revealed levels of glyphosate in dozens of food products that can be purchased in grocery stores.
Roundup Cancer Lawsuits in Pennsylvania
A pair of verdicts already have tied Roundup to cancer in two separate men, and thousands more lawsuits are either pending or soon will get underway across the United States. In fact, Bayer AG, which recently purchased Monsanto, the company that invented Roundup, has confirmed that it’s facing nearly 12,000 lawsuits over Roundup.
The first jury verdict in California came after a trial in which a former school groundskeeper claimed that his exposure to Roundup on the job caused his cancer. That jury agreed and awarded the man $289 million, though that amount was later reduced by a judge. Jury members also agreed with evidence that indicated that Monsanto was well aware of the dangers its product poses but did not act to warn consumers.
For Pennsylvania residents who have become sick or been diagnosed with a serious condition, including any type of cancer, state law likely limits the amount of time you have to seek damages for your illness. Our state has some of the least consumer-friendly laws, as statute sets a two-year time limit for product liability claims.
Roundup and Its Effect on Human Health
The California jury members are not the only groups of people convinced of the dangers posed by glyphosate and Roundup. Both the state of California and the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer officially list the herbicide as a probable carcinogen, and a growing body of research seems to agree.
Several medical and research studies have linked glyphosate and/or Roundup with many serious health problems, including:
- Childhood brain cancer
- Parkinson’s disease
- Alzheimer’s disease
- Crohn’s disease
- Celiac disease
- Thyroid cancer
- Autism spectrum disorder
- Breast cancer
How to File a Pennsylvania Roundup Lawsuit
Remember that if you have been injured due to your use of or exposure to Roundup or its active ingredient, glyphosate, Pennsylvania law could limit your time to seek justice. A consultation with a qualified, expert attorney is the best way to have your case evaluated.
For now, there has not been a mass class action declared in this case, which could mean higher jury verdicts for those who win their cases, but it also means that each and every case that proceeds will do so on its own merits. That’s why it’s crucial that if you have a claim against Monsanto and Bayer, you consult with a local attorney today.
Pennsylvania Roundup Cancer Lawsuit Lawyers & Attorneys
Ross Feller Casey
- Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
- Website: https://www.rossfellercasey.com/practice-areas/roundup-cancer-lawsuits/
- Phone number: 877-916-4690
Console & Associates
- Location: New Jersey and Pennsylvania
- Website: https://www.myinjuryattorney.com/national-claims/roundup-lawsuit-lawyers/
- Phone number: 800-207-3531
- U.S. Geological Survey, Estimated Annual Agricultural Pesticide Use. (2017.) Retrieved from https://water.usgs.gov/nawqa/pnsp/usage/maps/county-level/StateLevel/LowEstimate_AgPestUsebyCropGroup92to16.txt
- Reuters, U.S. trial tests claims Roundup weed killer caused cancer. (2019.) Retrieved from https://www.reuters.com/article/us-bayer-glyphosate-lawsuit/us-trial-tests-claims-roundup-weed-killer-caused-cancer-idUSKCN1QD0I8
- The Associated Press, Jury: Roundup weed killer is major factor in man’s cancer. (2019.) Retrieved from https://apnews.com/1f0ecf279c1b4a0c941506e4c255bbd8
- U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Agricultural Statistics Service, 2018 Pennsylvania Agricultural Statistics. (2018.) Retrieved from https://www.nass.usda.gov/Quick_Stats/Ag_Overview/stateOverview.php?state=PENNSYLVANIA
- Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture, Pennsylvania Agriculture, A Look at the Economic Impact and Future Trends. (2018.) Retrieved from https://www.agriculture.pa.gov/Documents/PennsylvaniaAgriculture_EconomicImpactFutureTrends.pdf
- FindLaw.com, Time Limits for Filing Product Liability Cases: State-by-State. (Undated.) Retrieved from https://injury.findlaw.com/product-liability/time-limits-for-filing-product-liability-cases-state-by-state.html
- U.S. Food and Drug Administration, Questions and Answers on Glyphosate. (2018.) Retrieved from https://www.fda.gov/food/foodborneillnesscontaminants/pesticides/ucm583713.htm
- Center for Environmental Health, Getting Toxic Chemicals Off The Menu, A School Guide To Safer Cereals. (Undated.) Retrieved from https://www.ceh.org/wp-content/uploads/Glyphosate-in-Schools-Report.pdf
- Moms Across America, Breakfast Favorite Orange Juice Tainted by Glyphosate Herbicide. (2018.) Retrieved from https://www.momsacrossamerica.com/orange_juice_postive_for_glyphosate_again
- National Institutes of Health, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Glyphosate-based herbicides are toxic and endocrine disruptors in human cell lines. (2009.) Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/19539684
- National Institutes of Health, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Glyphosate induced cell death through apoptotic and autophagic mechanisms. (2012.) Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22504123
- National Institutes of Health, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Glyphosate induces human breast cancer cells growth via estrogen receptors. (2013.) Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23756170