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Monsanto Papers | Secret Documents | Page Six

Issue: Surfactants, Carcinogenicity & Testing…continued

43. Deposition of Donna Farmer (Monsanto Toxicologist)
No: N/A
Date: 1/11/2017
Documents Released: 3/15/2017

Donna Farmer’s 1/11/2017 deposition details Monsanto’s reaction to Dr. James Parry’s review of glyphosate. Specifically, the deposition covers Monsanto’s reluctance to conduct studies suggested by Dr. Parry after being unhappy with Parry’s conclusions. Likewise, it appears that Monsanto never submitted Dr. Parry’s work on glyphosate to the EPA, even though internal emails describe him as a renowned expert.

Farmer is also asked about dermal absorption of glyphosate, and the effect of the surfactant in making glyphosate more able to get into the skin.

44. (a) Monsanto Executive Admits Studies Demonstrate Formulated Roundup ‘Does the Damage’ and (b) Heydens Discusses European Commission’s Request for Endocrine Disruptor Information
No: MONGLY00885526, MONGLY00885527
Date: 4/19/2002 – 4/25/2002
Documents Released: 8/1/2017

This document is an email correspondence between Drs. William Heydens and Donna Farmer, wherein the two discuss various studies which observed adverse effects by the formulated Roundup product. Specifically, Dr. Farmer acknowledges: “[t]he interest point is glyphosate all basicially [sic] had no effect the formulated product did – does this point us to the coformulants – sufactants? [sic]” at *2. Dr. Heydens also admits, after discussing with Monsanto consultant John Desesso, that “we are in pretty good shape with glyphosate but vulnerable with surfactants. . . What I’ve been hearing from you is that this continues to be the case with these studies – Glyphosate is OK but the formulated product (and thus the surfactant) does the damage.” at *1.

In MONGLY00885527, Heydens and Farmer discuss the European Commission’s request for endocrine disruptor information from plant protection product (PPP) manufacturers and how the European Chemical Industry Council (CEFIC) and its sub-group European Crop Protection Association (ECPA) plotted to provide no information. Heydens on “free studies”: “I want to understand what they all say, and see if there is anything more we should be doing besides the usual ‘pay no attention to the man behind the curtain’… Even though no testing requirements have been implemented for several years now, this damn endocrine crap just doesn’t go away, does it.”

This document is relevant and reasonably likely to be used in this litigation as it is an indication that Monsanto was cognizant of the adverse effects of surfactants or was otherwise uncertain of the effects of surfactants in the formulated Roundup product with cancer. It is further directly relevant to general causation as Monsanto’s toxicologists (deposed during general causation discovery) discuss Monsanto’s position that it is not biologically plausible for glyphosate to pose adverse health effects, a central feature of this litigation which is challenged by Plaintiffs. This is also relevant to Drs. Farmer’s and Heyden’s credibility, who are some of Monsanto’s primary expert witnesses at the company.

45. Internal Monsanto Email: ‘You Cannot Say That Roundup is not a Carcinogen’
No: MONGLY00922458
Date: 11/21/2003-11/24/2003
Documents Released: 8/1/2017

This document contains email correspondence between Donna Farmer and Sekhar Natarajan, in which Dr. Farmer discusses the potential adverse effects of the formulated Roundup product, conceding that “you cannot say that Roundup is not a carcinogen…we have not done the necessary testing on the formulation to make that statement.” at *1-2.

This document is relevant and reasonably likely to be used in this litigation as it evinces knowledge by a Monsanto toxicologist regarding the biological plausibility of the Roundup formulation, as opposed to glyphosate by itself, to act as a human carcinogen. This is also relevant to Dr. Farmer’s credibility, who is one of Monsanto’s primary expert witnesses at the company.

46. Email Showing Monsanto Had Long Known of N-nitrosoglyphosate (“NNG”) in Roundup
No: MONGLY00925905
Date: 9/23/2004
Documents Released: 3/15/2017


This document contains correspondence between Michael Cunningham (Monsanto) and several other colleagues discussing a counter argument against N-ntirosoglyphosate (“NNG”). The email quotes Dr. Ruth Shearer in 1984: “The problem with glyphosate… is that it combines readily with nitrites, found in normal human saliva, to form an N-nitroso compound called N-nitrosoglyphosate. Although that particular compound has not been tested as a cancer-causing agent, over 75% of all other N-nitroso compounds so tested have been shown to cause cancer by way of tumour formation.”

NNG is found in glyphosate-based formulations such as Roundup, but not necessarily in glyphosate evaluated in animal bioassays. The public will not find any reference to NNG on the Roundup® label. NNG is part of a family of carcinogenic chemicals known as “nitroso compounds”. Nitroso compounds have consistently been identified as carcinogenic following analysis. NNG forms whenever glyphosate interacts with nitrites, whether outside or inside the body.

47. Monsanto PowerPoint Presentation Shows 2010 Regulatory Goals in Germany to ‘Push Back on Data Requests’
No: MONGLY02721133
Date: 9/1/2005
Documents Released: 8/1/2017

This document is a PowerPoint presentation which details Monsanto’s regulatory goals for 2010. The strategy in Germany was to “Defend POEAs” and “push back on data requests.” at *10.

This document is relevant and reasonably likely to be used in this litigation as it demonstrates Monsanto’s unwillingness to cooperate with national regulatory agencies in providing comprehensive data for the registration of Roundup. This is particularly relevant since Monsanto routinely relies on the evaluations of foreign regulatory agencies to support its claim that Roundup does not cause cancer. The lack of data regarding the safety of the formulated product (in this instance the surfactant POEA) is related to the issue of regulatory agencies reaching an informed consensus on the carcinogenicity of Roundup. An important feature of general causation discovery has entailed the extent to which Monsanto circumvented proper regulatory safe guards.

48. Internal Email Discussing Metallic Ions in Glyphosate
No: MONGLY02478386
Date: 12/20/2007
Documents Released: 3/15/2017


This document contains email correspondence between Monsanto scientist Eric Haupfear and others discussing potential impurities in glyphosate. The email suggests reticence to conduct further tests on a quantitative level. Daniel Goldstein (Monsanto scientist), who comments in the email chain, says: “No decision has been made that we need to answer this question…I am NOT suggesting analytical work be initiated on this…”

49. Monsanto PowerPoint Presentation Shows Company Awareness of Roundup Cancer Plausibility
No: MONGLY01182770
Date: 7/15/2008
Documents Released: 8/1/2017

This document is a PowerPoint presentation concerning the “EU Expert Advisory Panel”. Page 6 of the presentation is titled: “Monsanto’s Roundup ® acts on one of the key stages of cellular division, which can potentially lead to cancer in the long term.” at *6. The page references a French in-vitro study which observed adverse effects associated with Roundup. The final page contains “questions” regarding how to “position” in-vitro hazards using “urine concentrations from applicator exposure into plasma concentrations.” at *7. Monsanto also considers the risks in “running a new study”. Id.

This document is relevant and reasonably likely to be used in this litigation to demonstrate that Monsanto was aware of the biological plausibility of Roundup as a carcinogen and realized the risks in conducting new studies that would confirm this suspicion already prevalent in the existing scientific literature.

50. Internal Email from 2008: Monsanto Executive Long Aware of Glyphosate Link to non-Hodgkin Lymphoma
No: MONGLY01179185
Date: 10/14/2008
Documents Released: 8/1/2017

This document contains email correspondence wherein Dean Nasser (Monsanto) sends a “Beyond Pesticides” publication to Dr. Donna Farmer. The publication references a study which found positive association between glyphosate and Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Dr. Farmer responds: “We have been aware of this paper for awhile and knew it would only be a matter of time before the activists pick it up… how do we combat this?” at *1.

This document is relevant and reasonably likely to be used in this litigation as it indicates Monsanto has been aware of the links between glyphosate and NHL for a considerable amount of time. Furthermore, as Dr. Farmer indicates, Monsanto aim to “combat” the biological plausibility of glyphosate as a carcinogen only when the information gains significant public attention. This is relevant since it lends support to Plaintiffs’ assertion that Monsanto has taken deliberate actions to influence scientific literature by attacking any study showing a link between Roundup and cancer. This is also relevant to Dr. Farmer’s credibility, who is one of Monsanto’s primary expert witnesses at the company.

51. Videotaped Deposition of Monsanto Toxicologist Donna Farmer + Monsanto Internal Emails
No: MONGLYO1192115 – MONGLYO1192117
Date: 9/21/2009 (Emails) 1/11/2017 (Deposition)
Documents Released: 3/14/2017

Monsanto Toxicologist Donna Farmer’s 1/2017 deposition where she is asked about a 2009 email in which she said, “you cannot say that Roundup does not cause cancer-we have not done carcinogenicity studies with “Roundup”.” (MONGLYO1192115)

In the depo, Farmer calls POEA ban in EU “a political decision.”

52. Monsanto Executive Steven Adams Discusses 1,4-Doixane Specs: “If There is a Chemical That is Considered to be Cancer Causing, it Doesn’t Matter How Much is in There…”
No: MONGLY01041300
Date: 6/10/2010
Documents Released: 3/15/2017

This document contains email correspondence in which Steven Adams (Monsanto) responds to a question regarding the specs for the surfactant 1,4-dioxane. In the email Adams states that 1,4-dioxane is “an impurity in the ethoxylated surfactants and not in the glyphosate manufacturing process itself.” 1,4-dioxane is not listed on the Roundup label, but is carcinogenic to animals and likely carcinogenic to humans. Adams continues discussing 1,4-dioxane: “…we have to be very careful before we go slinging mud about 1,4-dioxane in Chinese glyphosate in public, because whether it is 1 ppm or 10 ppm, we most likely have it on our products too, and the general public does not understand the difference between 1 ppm and a bucket full…if there is a chemical that is considered to be a cancer-causing, it don’t matter how much is in there, just that it is in there!”

53. Monsanto Inert Ingredient Submission to EPA (2010) and Internal Emails Related to Inerts
No: MONGLY05190476 – MONGLY05190485
Date: 11/17/2010 – 4/4/2013
Documents Released: 3/15/2017

This document contains Monsanto’s 2010 ‘Petition Proposing an Exemption from the Requirement of a Tolerance for Residues of Alkyl Amidodimethylpropyl Amine (AADPA) Surfactants in or on Raw Agricultural Products and Food Products. Monsanto requested the establishment of an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance for a new inert. At least five (5) Toxicology Studies submitted in the exemption request relating to Roundup ingredients were authored by Kimberly Hodge-Bell, a known participant and orchestrator in drafting waiver requests to regulatory agencies. It is believed that these summaries relate to toxicity findings in surfactants and are part of Monsanto’s catalog of studies related to inert submissions to regulatory bodies to support Roundup safety.

54. Internal Email: Monsanto Employee Admits Company Has Not Tested Carcinogenicity of Roundup Formulation
No: MONGLY01155974
Date: 12/10/2010-12/14/2010
Documents Released: 8/1/2017

This document contains email correspondence between various Monsanto personnel wherein Stephen Adams addresses the issue of testing Roundup formulations: “With regards to the carcinogenicity of our formulations we don’t have such testing on them directly…” at *1.

This document is relevant and reasonably likely to be used in this litigation as it contains admissions by a Monsanto employee which strongly undermine Monsanto’s contentions that it is not biologically plausible for the Roundup formulation to be carcinogenic. It militates against Monsanto’s claim that it has carried out sufficient testing to rule out the biological plausibility of Roundup to act as a human carcinogen.

55. Monsanto Internal Email: Employee Admits Company Hasn’t Tested Roundup for Chronic or Sub-Chronic Toxicity
No: MONGLY01159775
Date: 3/4/2013 – 3/5/2013
Documents Released: 8/1/2017

This document contains email correspondence between various Monsanto personnel wherein Xavier Belvaux confirms that: “We do not conduct sub-chronic, chronic or terotogenicity studies with our formulations.” at *2.

This document is relevant and reasonably likely to be used in this litigation as it contains express admissions by Monsanto that it has not tested Roundup for chronic or sub-chronic toxicity. Such lack of thorough toxicological analysis undermines Monsanto’s firm denial of the biological plausibility of Roundup’s carcinogenicity based on sufficient testing.

56. Monsanto Pressures Surfactant Manufacturer to Take Prop 65 Warning off Surfactant Material Safety Data Sheets
No: MONGLY04175012
Date: 3/20/2013 – 3/29/2013
Documents Released: 3/15/2017

The document contains email correspondence between Gary Klopf (Team Lead, Surfactant Sci and Formulation at Monsanto) and personnel at Azko Nobel, one of two main manufacturers of surfactants. The subject of this email chain is particularly concerning because it involves Monsanto pressuring Azko Nobel to take off a Prop 65 cancer warning from their surfactant material safety data sheets, so that Monsanto can avoid a Prop 65 warning on Roundup.

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