A recent study has found that some of the most popular beer and wine brands in this country contain dangerous amounts of Monsanto’s weedkiller Roundup, posing a HUGE health hazard to American consumers. Ring of Fire’s Mike Papantonio and Farron Cousins discuss.


*This transcript was generated by a third-party transcription software company, so please excuse any typos.

Mike Papantonio:             A recent study has found that some of the most popular beer and wine brands in this country contains dangerous amounts of Monsanto’s weed killer Roundup. It is everywhere. It poses a huge health hazard to American consumers and people simply don’t understand it. The story is not being told about how dangerous this product is. Farron what bothers me about this is at the bottom, the bottom line for consumers is they should have a choice.

They should understand, I want to buy this product because I know what’s in it. Now, here you have Monsanto that for years they have been fighting labeling at all costs. They don’t want labeling that is GMO. They don’t want labeling that it contains Roundup. They don’t want the connection between the reason that GMO is dangerous is because Roundup saturates the GMO. They don’t want to give the consumers any choice.

This is a great example of what happens when you don’t give consumers a choice by simply telling them if they want to drink the wine that has arsenic or the wine that has glyphosate in it, that’s their choice, but give them a choice. What’s your take on this story?

Farron Cousins:                  I agree 100%. And in this particular issue, I think people kind of have this understanding. You know, when you’re going in, you’re buying fresh produce, there’s a risk that this could have been sprayed with Roundup. It could be a GMO. But when you’re buying a finished product and that has glyphosate in it, people don’t ever think of that connection. But glyphosate, it does not cook off. It does not rinse off. It does not wash off.

If it is on a food substance and that substance, like a grain that’s used for making beer or making bread, it stays on it through the finished product that then gets consumed by the human beings. So it’s in the, it’s in the bread, it’s in the beer, it’s in the wine. And these are not just, you know, a few beer and wine labels. These are the biggest ones. Gallo, Beringer, Mondavi, Barefoot, Sutter Home, Budweiser, Busch, Coors, Michelob, Sam Adams.

Mike Papantonio:             Okay, so, so, so here’s, here’s the bottom line. I mean, what’s interesting, people see you doing political, they see you doing political elements to Ring of Fire. They don’t understand, a lot of times, you are editor of the National Trial Lawyer Magazine, which is the biggest lawyer magazine in America, maybe in the world. So you have followed this story.

You’ve actually done this story. I, and one thing that I thought was interesting in something that you’d written, is you talk about the idea that organic, we should at least believe that we’re not going to find Roundup in our organic wine, right? That’s not the case. As a matter of fact, as we look at the story, what we find is that even with organic, with organic wine, you find 23 parts per billion in the wine. Now that doesn’t sound like, that doesn’t sound like a problem.

It is a huge problem because the cancer research that’s coming out and it’s very clear, shows that one part per trillion has the ability to cause breast cancer cell division. Now, if you don’t understand that, it’s very clear. They’re talking about they know that two, 23 parts per billion is in the wine that you’re drinking. If it with glyphosate, with Roundup elements of Roundup.

They also know that one part per trillion has the ability to cause cancer. That’s what I’m talking about when I talk about choice. People should have the choice. I don’t want to drink wine that has Roundup in it. You know, I don’t want to drink the stuff. I’ll go get something else. Isn’t that what this is all about is just choice?

Farron Cousins:                  It is, and another part of the issue here and this could open up a whole new area of litigation. In fact, I think it has with Dicamba, is the issue of drift with Roundup because you may have these farmers out there doing everything they’re supposed to. They’re not putting these harmful pesticides or weed killers like Roundup to keep consumers safe, but it still ends up on their product because it blows in the wind, it evaporates and then rains back down on these other farms.

This is mentioned in this story as well and in some cases it just gets into the soil slowly goes into the ground, water gets re-pumped somewhere else to an organic farm and there you have Roundup on crops that, you know, people tried to do the right thing, end up spraying Roundup on their crops. They don’t know it. The consumers don’t know it. They think they’re buying something safer because it says organic.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah.

Farron Cousins:                  But that’s a marketing term. Organic is a marketing term.

Mike Papantonio:             Exactly. We’re finding it in wheat, organic wheat, organic barley, soy. Here’s the real issue. This is, this is what should scare the bejesus out of Monsanto, but they’re bulletproof. They got such political clout, of course now they’re in with Bayer. That’s Bayer and Monsanto, two of the biggest corporations in the world. They have all the political clout they want.

They’ve got the Democrats with them, they’ve got the Republicans with them, they’ve got the regulators with them. They even have the media with them. So what is happening now is we’re finding that it is in soy, that Roundup is not just in the wine, it’s in baby formula. Soy, soy formula is, is, soy is used for baby formula more than any other product.

It is, what we’re finding is it’s in the baby product. Now add to that that there are studies after studies that show, we’re, we’re just talking about breast cancer here. There’s studies that show it’s, it’s related to Parkinson’s disease. It’s related to brain cancer in children. It’s related to the, the World Health Organization for God’s sakes. The IARC, the World Health Organization, the UN World Health Organization said they studied it.

They said this stuff will cause cancer, but still we don’t give them a choice. We don’t even, we don’t give consumers a choice because Monsanto and now Bayer spends so much money fighting back the politics, lobbying and fighting back the politics. What’s your take on that?

Farron Cousins:                  Well, I have to add it to your list because there’s this massive list here of all of the diseases or illnesses that have been linked by independent scientists, because God knows we’re not going to get any real studies from the EPA or FDA here. ADHD, Alzheimer’s, anencephaly, autism, birth defects, brain cancer, breast cancer, other forms of cancer, celiac disease, chronic kidney disease, colitis, depression, diabetes, heart disease, hypothyroidism, inflammatory bowel.

Mike Papantonio:             Now by the way…

Farron Cousins:                  The list keeps going. There’s so many of them.

Mike Papantonio:             Can I tell you something? Here, here this sounds weird. I’ve read every one of the studies because I have to take depositions in this case, the end of this month. So I’ve read every one of the studies. What every time a study comes out, here’s what you see. You see this attack. For example, Séralini, this, this, this article that we’re doing about finding Roundup in, in wine. This came about because of a scientist named Séralini who did the study and in 2018 he came out with this list and he says, we studied all this.

It doesn’t, by the way, he has no ax to grind. He has, this guy has no agenda. He is simply a scientist who did a study a couple of years ago that showed that the component parts of Roundup, not just the glyphosate but all the adjuvant, this certain, the other parts of it, that those parts independently have the ability to cause cancer, leukemia, non Hodgkin’s lymphoma.

So what ends up happening is, what do they do? They attack Séralini. They tried to get him fired from all of his boards. They attack him in his university. They get the, the idiotic, stupid moronic corporate media to side with Monsanto against Séralini. These reporters who haven’t read any of this stuff, who don’t have the first clue about how dangerous this stuff is.

They side with Monsanto against Séralini. The same thing happened with the World Health Organization. World Health Organization, 19 independent scientists come up and they say yes, this stuff will cause cancer. They attack every one of the scientists in their backyard.

Farron Cousins:                  It’s very interesting that you bring that up because you know I, I, as you said, I’ve done stories on, on, on Monsanto and Roundup. I’ve done it for the Trial Lawyer Magazine. I’ve done it for DeSmogBlog. And when I do, I start to get all of these notifications on Twitter. And this is going back, you know, three, four years before the issue of Twitter bots was a thing.

Mike Papantonio:             Yeah.

Farron Cousins:                  And so these people would start attacking me saying I’m, I’m, I’m lying, I’m incorrect. This is absolutely not true. You look at the profiles, you find out, oh they’re, they’re a scientist. So you look into them, you know, you search their names. It’s Monsanto scientists. And so they will, they go after any and everybody.

Mike Papantonio:             Oh God, they’re going after us.

Farron Cousins:                  They perfected this use of corporate, you know, Twitter intimidation, long before the politicians were using it. And it is crazy because they are out there every day scouring the Internet, trying to find somebody, anybody saying something bad about Monsanto to try to discredit them. And it’s the same with the scientists. They, they do it across the board here.

Mike Papantonio:             Well we’ve isolated it. I mean we’ve isolated the bots. For example, when we do this story, they have big, huge PR firms. They have PR firms all over the country that put what, they put these bot rooms together. And one bot room is in charge of following everything that happened about the Séralini study and they attack every, anybody talking about Séralini.

Follow everybody that has anything to do with the World Health Organization saying that Roundup causes cancer and they follow them. Here’s the real crazy thing. If you watch a Roundup ad on television, they’re, they’re flooding the market with Roundup ads.

Farron Cousins:                  Especially this time of year, yeah.

Mike Papantonio:             It’s also, it’s all, it’s always some cat. He’s got shorts on, he’s got short sleeves on. You know he’s getting stuff. He’s breathing it in. He has no goggles. If you look at what Monsanto says needs to be worn to safely use this stuff, it’s supposed to be gloves. Well the guy in the advertisement doesn’t have gloves. Supposed to be long cloths that cover your entire body. Guy In the advertisement doesn’t have that.

Should be goggles. Guy in the advertisement doesn’t have it. They know how dangerous it is. They understand, their own, the first, the first test that ever came out of their laboratory dealt with a, with a, with a rat study and it showed them that the rat, they had a control group and then they had the non control group that they were exposing to, to Roundup. Well the, the rat, the control rat, there was no tumor.

They didn’t find any tumor because he wasn’t getting any exposure. The rats over that were getting the exposure and the high density exposure was three times what it should’ve been. Medium, medium range was double what it should have been. It’s tumors that they were finding on the kidneys and other parts of the rats. Well what did they do? They phonied it all up.

Once they found out that there was a problem with that control group, they went out and hired this biostitute, this guy that would say anything that had to be said and they all of a sudden the biostitute says, oh well I see a tumor in the control group, which of course changes the whole validity of the study. So, I mean this, this company is capable of anything. You add Bayer to it and oh my God, it’s like throwing gasoline on it.

Mike Papantonio is an American attorney and television and radio talk show host. He is past president of The National Trial Lawyers, the most prestigious trial lawyer association in America; and is one of the few living attorneys inducted into the Trial Lawyer Hall of Fame. He hosts the international television show "America's Lawyer"; and co-hosts Ring of Fire Radio, a nationally syndicated weekly radio program, with Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. and Sam Seder.