Fruit giant Dole has reached an agreement to terminate 38 lawsuits filed in the United States and Nicaragua alleging pesticide-related injuries, the company said.
The complaints concerned Dibromochloropropane (DBCP), a pesticide sprayed on crops to control worms for over two decades before it was banned in 1977 following reports of infertility among male workers exposed to it.
The terminated lawsuits included two Nicaraguan judgments totaling $907.5 million.
The agreement was reached with Provost Umphrey law firm, which had represented the foreign plaintiffs, Dole said, without providing further information about the possible value of the settlement.
"The termination of these 38 lawsuits takes Dole completely out of all Provost Umphrey DBCP litigation... and moves Dole closer to the eventual elimination of all DBCP lawsuits," Dole's executive vice president C. Michael Carter said.
"Though there is no reliable scientific basis for alleged injuries from the agricultural field application of DBCP, Dole has been willing to consider possible agreements which recognize that there is no causal connection between DBCP and plaintiffs' allegations."
Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2012