LEGAL UPDATE: ATTENTION – Agricultural workers who were exposed to the herbicide Paraquat and have been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease
Paraquat is a widely used herbicide in the United States for the control of broadleaf weeds and grasses before planting or emergence of various crops, to control weeds in orchards, and to desiccate plants before harvest. Paraquat, commonly known by the brand name Gramoxone, is a restricted-use pesticide only available for use by certified applicators due to its high level of toxicity. Paraquat is so dangerous that it is either banned or phased out in 32 countries worldwide, including China, the European Union, and Brazil.
Since its registration as an herbicide in the United States in 1964, countless Kentucky farmers have used or been exposed to Paraquat over the course of their lives and farming careers. U.S. farmers currently use more than 8 million pounds each year on crops such as peanuts, citrus, wheat, soy, corn, almonds, artichokes, garlic, pears, strawberries, grapes, sweet potatoes, and cotton. Those most at risk from exposure to Paraquat are farmers, crop dusters, herbicide applicators, chemical mixers, tank fillers, and other agriculture workers.