Corporate Karma

Please share the video widely. Please share again and again.

A link to this video was contained in a joint press release (see below), between IRT and the German-based Coordination against BAYER-Dangers (CBG). On Thursday, April 23rd, our release went to about 700 European news outlets.

On Sunday, April 26th, CBD hosted Jeffrey at their online press event, which also featured a member of the European Parliament. Click here to view Jeffrey’s presentation.

Jeffrey also presented at the day-long online protest event that occurred in parallel with Bayer’s annual meeting on Tuesday.

He submitted two questions, with significant explanation, to be read during the shareholder meeting. Although Bayer claimed they read and answered every question during the meeting, they reduced his two minute explanation to a butchered 5 seconds. Bayer thereby depriving its shareholders and the public from hearing Jeffrey’s dire prediction about the company’s future, and specific remedies needed to help prevent bankruptcy.

What follows is the text of yesterday’s press release provides Jeffrey’s analysis and recommendations.

Press Release

Bayer Ignores Investigator’s Warning at AGM: 

“Change Course or Face Possible Bankruptcy”

Bonn, Germany, 29 April— For Bayer’s Annual General Meeting yesterday, Monsanto investigator Jeffrey Smith predicted that Bayer will face possible bankruptcy from a new wave of lawsuits linking Roundup herbicide to numerous diseases, and that the current expected payout of up to $12 billion to more than 50,000 plaintiffs with Non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) is only the beginning. In questions submitted at Bayer’s AGM and elaborated in a short video and online presentations, Smith, the founder of the Institute for Responsible Technology, said Roundup is now implicated in several other cancers and more than 2 dozen diseases. “The total number of people suffering from these conditions is staggering,” wrote Smith, “thousands of times more than those currently represented. If even a tiny percentage were to receive a settlement, the award could easily bankrupt Bayer.”

In 2019, Bayer shareholders gave their leadership an unprecedented Vote of No Confidence due to its ill-fated purchase of Monsanto, the maker of Roundup. Massive jury awards in just three trials by four plaintiffs had previously caused Bayer’s stock price to plummet by more than 35% and forced its chairman to step down yesterday. Smith, who has been exposing Monsanto’s dark side in books, movies, and presentations in 45 countries for 24 years, had written an open letter to Bayer investors in 2016, urging them to not to purchase Monsanto. He accurately listed Roundup’s classification as a “Probable Human Carcinogen” as one of the significant liabilities that could hurt Bayer.

At this week’s online side event organized by Coordination against BAYER-Dangers (CBG), Smith explained research that demonstrates how Roundup damages several physiological systems and can therefore cause or exacerbate numerous chronic conditions. In his AGM submittal, he described the threat and outlined a way forward that could protect the company and the public. If the AGM were held in-person, Smith would have been given time to read his statement and could have alerted shareholders to the new dangers. But for this year’s online conference, Bayer received and edited written submissions. They chose not to share Smith’s prediction or proposed way forward. Bayer did restate their claim that Roundup is not harmful.

Bayer Can Take Steps to Protect from Bankruptcy

Based on his analysis of the Roundup trials, which included hours of interviews with attorneys and jurors, Smith says “Two categories of evidence drove the juries’ judgements and large punitive awards, Monsanto’s malicious behavior and the weight of the science. Unless Bayer addresses both, they will continue to lose.”

1. Full Disclosure Required

In his AGM submittal, Smith wrote: “Monsanto’s history was fraught with coverups, bullying, lies, and manipulation. . . Juries were furious with Monsanto’s behavior, and with Bayer for keeping the evidence hidden.”

To remedy this, he asked Bayer directors, “Are you willing to make public all evidence on Roundup and Monsanto’s bad behavior, including every internal study and related document on safety, and every instance where Monsanto manipulated, colluded, attacked, and covered up? By exposing and condemning Monsanto’s prior behaviors, you will distance yourself and claim the higher ground.”

2. Independent Research, Not Corporate Fraud

Smith wrote, “The science presented on behalf of Monsanto was thin and superficial at best, and more often fraudulent. Juries were angry at Monsanto for not doing the meaningful tests that could demonstrate safety and protect consumers. At the same time, jurors were given ample data from independent studies verifying the link to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.”

Although Smith believes there is now ample evidence to remove Roundup from the market, he says that if the company refuses to do so, Bayer should “fully fund independent comprehensive intergenerational studies on the full Roundup formulation, looking for links to disease?” He said in his submission, “If the studies shows safety, then you have the data to fend off lawsuits. If the studies show otherwise, you must immediately remove Roundup.”

Bayer did not share these statements and questions with investors.

Smith says, “We hoped that Bayer would finally become the responsible corporate citizen it claims to be, but instead it has chosen to continue in the tradition of Monsanto. Bayer ignores science, hides evidence from its shareholders and the public, and continues to expose the population to its very dangerous herbicide Roundup.”

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