Farmworkers win battle over Methyl Iodide
On Tuesday, farmworkers scored an important victory in their battle against toxins in their workplaces and in their homes. In the face of intense public pressure and mounting court challenges, Arysta LifeScience announced it would immediately suspend sales of its carcinogenic pesticide methyl iodide, stating that the product was no longer economically viable in the U.S. market.
In the final days of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s administration, California pesticide regulators approved the fumigant’s use in 2010 despite opposition from scientists and public health advocates who claim that the toxin is linked to cancer, fetal deformity, miscarriage, and thyroid disease. Since then, environmental and farmworker advocates pressured Gov. Jerry Brown's administration to reconsider the decision, through public petition drives, statewide protests and a lawsuit filed in state court.
Farmworker Justice applauds those organizations and individuals who made this victory possible, especially those farmworkers who courageously spoke out against methyl iodide at the risk of losing their jobs. Farmworkers work hard every day to put fruits and vegetables on our tables. Their health and safety should not be sacrificed for the sake of profit.