Bayer to put $5.6B toward additional weed-resistance methods, wants ‘more choices for growers’

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Bayer on Friday said its planning to pour billions of dollars into more weed-resistance methods aside from glyphosate, an active ingredient in Roundup.

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Over the next 10 years, the German chemical and pharmaceutical company vowed to invest about 5 billion euros – or $5.6 billion – toward the effort, adding that they’re “committed to offering more choices for growers,” according to a news release.

But “glyphosate will continue to play an important role in agriculture and in Bayer’s portfolio,” they said.

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Bayer shared their future goals amid their legal battles in the U.S., in which people have alleged that Roundup weed killer – a product from the company’s subsidiary, Monsanto – caused cancer.

A California jury in May ruled in favor of a couple who made such a claim and Monsanto was ordered to pay $2 billion in damages. Bayer vowed to appeal the decision, arguing that it ran against what the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has recently said about the chemical.

The agency reaffirmed its position in April that glyphosate posed "no risks of concern" for people exposed to it. The agency reaffirmed that the chemical "is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans."

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Bayer on Friday said their investment “will go towards improving the understanding of resistance mechanisms, discovering and developing new modes of actions, further developing tailored Integrated Weed Management solutions and developing more precise recommendations through digital farming tools.”

The Associated Press contributed to this report.