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Bayer Forges Ahead With New Crops Resistant to 5 Herbicides

Despite lawsuits and regulations, the agrichemical company is developing new genetically engineered corn designed to work with five herbicides, including glyphosate and dicamba.

Over the past few years, Bayer (which now owns Monsanto) has repeatedly lost in court to those who have claimed its Roundup herbicide is responsible for their cancer diagnoses. Things appeared to get worse for the agrichemical company last week, when it agreed to pay $10 billion to settle tens of thousands of similar lawsuits.

At the same time, the company paid $400 million to settle claims brought by farmers who claimed their crops were destroyed when dicamba, the active ingredient in Bayer’s XtendiMax herbicide, drifted onto their fields. That was after a federal court reversed the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) approval of dicamba based on extensive evidence of widespread harm it caused to farmers’ crops. (U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue then urged the EPA to allow the continued use of already purchased dicamba products.)

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