In the Field: Dicamba (An Anthology: 2015 - 2020)

Since 2015, the Midwest Center for Investigative Reporting has covered the pesticide dicamba and its increased use as new genetically modified soybeans and cotton seeds were developed to resist the chemical.

The agribusiness company Monsanto, now owned by Bayer, announced in 2015 that its pipeline of dicamba-resistant seeds and own version of the pesticide formulated to drift less would be the biggest biotech launch in company history.

Roundup, the most popular weed control system, was increasingly becoming less effective as over the years, weeds had developed a resistance to its key ingredient, glyphosate.

Farmers - faced with unexpected weather events, low prices and uncertain yields - were anxious for new effective weed control solutions. But the new dicamba-system had problems. Farmers saw millions of acres of nonresistant soybeans damaged by dicamba drift. Tensions were high. 

States implemented restrictions and the federal Environmental Protection Agency also restricted the pesticide's use. Bayer faces thousands of lawsuits over dicamba's damage - now merged into a class action case.

Prepare for a lot of pages! It's not just our coverage, it's also hundreds of pages fo background materials such as lawsuits, emails, and company statements and reports from Monsanto.

This updated version includes all of our coverage from a class action lawsuit against Bayer and BASF from a Missouri peach farmer, who claimed the companies deliberately caused an 'ecological disaster' to boost sales of their dicamba-related products. The farmer, Bill Bader, was awarded $265 million - which the companies plan to appeal.