Appeals Court Dismisses Complaint Against Maker of Facet Herbicide

FEBRUARY 11, 2005 - Posted at 5:05 p.m. CST

LITTLE ROCK, AR - A federal appeals court today agreed to dismiss two lawsuits by east Arkansas tomato farmers against the maker of the herbicide facet.

The combined lawsuit by farmers alleged that manufacturer BASF didn't adequately warn farmers of how harmful Facet is to home garden plants like tomatoes, and how the herbicide can drift from cropdusters over rice fields to neighboring tomato fields.

But District Judge Susan Webber Wright dismissed the lawsuit in 2003, and the three-judge panel of the Eight U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in St. Louis agreed.  The appeals court said BASF already changed its Facet labels to make the dangers clear.

Rice farmers have planes apply Facet to ward off the weed known as barnyard grass.

(Copyright 2005 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)