While the Internet has been abuzz with claims that Costco had already dumped Monsanto’s flagship pesticide product, RoundUp, a spokesperson on behalf of the corporation only just announced on May 29 that the company is not planning to sell the product this season.
Since Feb 1, 2019, I was in touch with Costco representatives to confirm or deny the reports that the company will not be carrying Roundup. Finally, after repeated attempts over the last four months Corporate Communications on behalf of Costco Management, at Costco Wholesale Corporation stated the following: “Costco is constantly reviewing its (product) lineup, and is not planning to sell RoundUp this season.”
The timing is not surprising, given that Monsanto, now owned by Bayer AG, just lost three court cases in which the product was alleged to cause cancer. The third and latest trial resulted in a $2.055 Billion award in favor of the plaintiffs, Alva and Alberta Pilliod—a couple in their seventies, approaching 50 years of marriage. Alva suffers from a form of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma that spread in his bones and spine, while Alberta has brain cancer linked to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
The decision to not carry RoundUp this season (and perhaps afterward—we’ll have to wait to find out), is not one that most big box stores have followed. Stores like Home Depot, Walmart, Target, Kroger and others continue to sell the toxic pesticide despite the lawsuits and warnings from the World Health Organization (WHO) beginning in 2015 that glyphosate—the active ingredient—is a “probable carcinogen” after its exhaustive review of approximately 1000 studies.