Product liability an uphill battle with big corporations involved

Natural or safe foods are a growing concern for individuals across the nation, including residents in Panama City, Florida. As news reports of genetically modified crops and increasingly dangerous chemical treatments come to light, individuals may wonder what foods are safe to eat. Though food concerns have recently gained grassroots popularity, especially on the Internet, recent reports of ongoing struggles with large corporations indicate that the issue of dangerous products is not something that's new.

A recent news report from another state sheds some light on how the battle for individuals and community groups shapes up when the opponent is a large pesticide company or other corporation. One scientist talked about a meeting held several years ago when residents and activist groups became concerned about the use of a chemical known as chlorpyfiros in treating crops. The scientist reports that concerned individuals were given only one or two minutes each to make their case. Scientists for a large corporation were also invited to the meeting, and they were given five to ten minutes to speak.

Reports are that large corporations can overpower individuals and nonprofits by throwing money at product liability cases. This phenomenon isn't limited to the pesticides or food industry, either. Across industries, high-profit companies are able to pay fines or settle cases out of court without a huge hit to their bottom line, making it hard for individuals to make an impact or effect change.

Advocates for safer food and farming methods point out that pesticide and GMO companies also wield a large amount of political power. The companies back a lot of political candidates and are instrumental in funding campaigns. Farmers and individuals who are attempting to change regulations to create safer practices fight an uphill battle on all fronts.

Even so, it's important to take action when a company's products or methods cause personal injury. Seeking compensation for injuries not only offers the chance at financial provision for the individual but also contributes to bringing issues to light in public venues.

Source: The Nation, "The Pesticide Industry vs. Consumers: Not a Fair Fight" Lee Fang, Mar. 11, 2014

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