A jury in California’s Sans Francisco ordered agrochemical giant Monsanto to pay $289 million to a man who accused that the company’s Roundup weed killer caused his terminal cancer.
While the company has said that it would appeal the ruling, the award by the jury sets a precedence hundreds of such cases are pending before several courts across the country.
Dewayne Johnson, a former school groundskeeper, developed cancer in 2014 at the age of 42. He alleged that this was a result of his spraying of large volumes Roundup and a generic product, Ranger Pro as a groundskeeper at a San Francisco Bay Area school district.
Monsanto says its products are safe, citing hundreds of studies. But the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Cancer Research in 2015 classified glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”