Market Overview

$289 Million Judgement Against Monsanto and Its Roundup Brand Herbicide - Freedonia Group Analyst Weighs In


$289 Million Judgement Against Monsanto and Its Roundup Brand Herbicide - Freedonia Group Analyst Weighs In

PR Newswire

CLEVELAND, Aug. 15, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- On August 10, a jury in California ruled that Roundup gave Dewayne Johnson, a former school groundskeeper, terminal cancer and awarded him a $289 million judgment.

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This was the first of what has grown to be more than a thousand such cases pending that are claiming that Monsanto's herbicide caused non-Hodgkin's lymphoma.

Monsanto Vice President Scott Partridge said, "We will appeal this decision and continue to vigorously defend this product, which has a 40-year history of safe use and continues to be a vital, effective and safe tool for farmers and others."

According to Freedonia analyst Emily Park, "Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, is one of the most common lawn and garden herbicides and has been in use since the 1970s. Roundup has positioned Monsanto as one of the leading suppliers to the $1.8 billion US market for lawn and garden herbicides."

Furthermore, she notes, "Health and environmental concerns play a key role in herbicide product formulations. All such products manufactured, distributed, or sold in the US must be approved for registration by the EPA. In order to acquire EPA approval of a pesticide, scientific evidence verifying a product's safety for specific applications is necessary. Once approved, the pesticide must be labeled, stating the proper instructions for use, handling, storage, and disposal."

Although the EPA and many scientific studies from other organizations have deemed Roundup to be safe, that finding hasn't been universal. In March 2015, the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer said the key ingredient in Roundup, glyphosate, is "probably carcinogenic to humans."

According to Jennifer Mapes-Christ, Manager of Freedonia's Consumer & Commercial group, "The general concern about the health effects of herbicides and pesticides is driving interest in niche organic garden products and the reduced use of herbicides overall. The rising trend toward edible gardening at home is furthering that movement away from herbicide use in general. The majority of Americans feel they should be environmentally responsible, and gardeners believe this at an even higher rate.

Mapes-Christ continues, "Still, many homeowners, property managers, and landscapers continue to use Roundup and other herbicides – although sometimes in improper quantities – to save the time and labor involved in manually removing weeds."

Additional analysis of herbicides and other lawn and garden consumables can be found in the following Freedonia reports:

Lawn & Garden Consumables in the US

Lawn & Garden Consumables: Consumer Insights  

For more information on these and other lawn and garden industry studies, please see Freedonia's Consumer Goods segment.

About The Freedonia Group – The Freedonia Group, a division of, is a leading international industrial research company publishing more than 100 studies annually. Since 1985 we have provided research to customers ranging in size from global conglomerates to one-person consulting firms. More than 90% of the industrial companies in the Fortune 500 use Freedonia Group research to help with their strategic planning. Each study includes product and market analyses and forecasts, in-depth discussions of important industry trends, and market share information. Studies can be purchased at and are also available on and

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