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The Face of a Poisoned Man

Dr. Mark Sircus

Yannick Chenet, a French winegrower, died after contracting leukemia, becoming the first farmer to have his illness officially linked to the pesticides he used for years on his crops. He is among 40 or so farmers in France whose illnesses have now been officially linked to their profession and the pesticides they have sprayed on the land. More than a quarter of the roughly 220,000 tons of pesticides used in Europe per year is sprayed onto French soil.

Yannick started working at 14 or 15 years of age and, like many children around the world, has been heavily exposed to pesticides and many other noxious chemicals. In April 2004, he inadvertently breathed in noxious fumes from his agricultural spraying machine without a mask on. Immediately admitted to hospital, he fell into a coma. Since then his illness continues to affect his kidneys and nervous system and he has again fallen into comas on several occasions.