Glyphosate, perhaps surprisingly for a chemical so
ubiquitously associated with our food, was not first used as an agricultural
chemical but instead first patented as a metal chelator in 1964 by Stauffer
Chemical company (US 3160632 A)  and used as an industrial pipe cleaner. It
was later patented by Monsanto as an herbicidal agent in 1974 (US3799758 A) 
based on its ability to block the shikimate pathway involved in the production
of aromatic amino acids in both plants and bacteria. It has become the most
popular herbicide in the world especially since glyphosate tolerant genetically
modified (GM) crops were commercialized in the mid-1990s, together with the
assumption (perpetrated by Monsanto) that the herbicide is safe for health and the environment. In 2010, it was also patented by
Monsanto as an antibiotic agent. Moreover, it is being increasingly used as a
pre-harvest desiccant for drying seeds, a process that results in contamination
of non-GM grains, one of the main exposure routes in the EU where GM crops are
not commonly grown. Thus, an estimated 70 % of UK oil seed rape (canola) and
50-60 % of EU sunflowers are sprayed with glyphosate , resulting in products
of major food brands in the UK testing positive for glyphosate residues in a
2014 analysis by GM Freeze, with glyphosate the most commonly detected of all
All of glyphosate’s chemical
properties already mentioned have implications for the health of both people
and planet. Scientific research has additionally implicated glyphosate as an
endocrine disruptor and a DNA mutagen; and it affects over 291 different
enzymes in the body . It is increasingly linked with a wide variety of
illnesses, the sharp rises in illnesses occurring in parallel with glyphosate
application across various GM cultivating regions of the world.
The most convincing evidence of
glyphosate toxicity is the consistent pattern of diseases associated with
glyphosate that has emerged from the farm to the clinic and from scientific
studies to citizen testimonials.
Glyphosate widespread in the environment
and in our bodies
Glyphosate’s popularity is due in large
measure to its concomitant use with the most widely planted type of GM crops,
those tolerant to glyphosate-herbicides. Monsanto commercialised the first
Roundup-ready crop in 1996 (Roundup being the commercial formulation containing
‘adjuvants’ that make it much more toxic than the active ingredient glyphosate
alone, see later). In countries such as Argentina where large swaths of the
country have been dubbed soy deserts, GM soybean cultivation has resulted in an
858 % rise in glyphosate use (see  Devastating Impacts of Glyphosate Use with
GMO Seeds in Argentina, to appear). Similarly, the
US has seen even greater rises of 2 500 % from 1987 to 2007 .
This widespread and massive application of glyphosate herbicides has resulted
in almost ubiquitous
contamination of the environment. A 2014 study on US water systems across 38
states found glyphosate and its principle metabolite AMPA
(aminomethylphosphonic acid) not only in rivers, lakes and streams, but also
rain, soil and sediment, ditches and drains and groundwater (see ). Some 70 % of rain samples tested positive
for glyphosate. Similarly in Europe, (in Catalonia, a
large region of Spain) it was found that all 11 groundwater sites were positive for
glyphosate despite it being a region free from glyphosate-tolerant crop
cultivation; 41 % of samples were above detection limits . The
detection in groundwater goes against one of the claims on glyphosate safety
that its propensity to bind to soil and sediment means it
will not leach into our fresh water supplies. In Argentina, new data of rain sample measurements
averaged an extreme 6.5 µg/L and reaching as high as 67 µg/L (67 ppb) across
four regions from October 2012 to April 2014 . These levels are far higher
than those seen in US rain samples where the average and maximum concentrations
were 0.11 µg/L and 2.5 µg/L respectively .
Tap water and
rivers also test positive for glyphosate with UK samples coming up (30 parts per trillion (ppt) and 190 ppt respectively) at concentrations within range of those found to
be toxic in lab studies (see  How Roundup
Poisoned my Nature Reserve, SiS 64).
Urban areas also get sprayed, prompting London
citizens to organise banning campaigns of glyphosate spraying in public areas
including child-friendly zones . Even oceans are not spared from glyphosate
poisoning, with run-offs into the sea persisting for up to 267 days in sea
water obtained from the Great Barrier Reef and tested in the lab .
Due to the official ‘safe’ status of glyphosate, data
on how much we are being exposed have been scarce, forcing citizen activists
and civil society organizations to find out for themselves. Friends of the
Earth Europe commissioned an analysis of 182 volunteers across 18 EU countries
and found detectable levels in 44 % of urine samples  with concentrations
ranging from 0.16 ug/L average in Switzerland, to 1.82ug/L in Latvia. Of the UK
citizens tested, 7 out of 10 were positive. In the US, urine samples show
concentrations 8 times those in Europe . The analysis, commissioned by Moms
Across America, also tested 10 mother’s breast milk, which came up positive for
glyphosate with levels ranging from 76 µg/L to 166 µg/L (76-166 ppb) (see
). These levels are 760 to 1600 times higher than the European Drinking
Water Directive allows for individual pesticides, and raise obvious concerns as
they fall within the range of concentrations at which developmental toxicity
has been observed in animal studies (see below). This analysis is the only study on breast milk to date, as no government
or public health body has found it necessary to carry out any study on
bioaccumulation in internal organs and tissues or in breast milk fed to
scientific studies have backed up the work of activists and civil society
organisations. Awad Shehata and colleagues in Germany looked at glyphosate
levels in the urine of both chronically ill and healthy people, and found
significantly higher levels in ill people in samples taken from 102 and 199
healthy and chronically ill people respectively . Those who ate
predominantly organic food had lower levels, along with livestock that were fed
conventional versus genetically modified feed. The study also looked at levels
in cow tissues as well as urine. Detection of glyphosate in the tissues
contradicts one of the assumption-based arguments used
by industry and regulators that due to glyphosate’s high water solubility, it
is rapidly excreted from the body and therefore risks of harm are negligible. In such a case, the levels of glyphosate
in urine would be expected to be much greater than levels found in the tissues.
However, urine levels in cows averaged 27-42 µg/ml (27-42 parts per million
(ppm)), while the level in tissues (intestine, liver, spleen, kidney and
muscle) averaged between 14-20 µg/ml, which is within range of urine levels.
Though they did not compare glyphosate levels in urine and internal organs of
the same cow, the average levels across all cow samples dispute the assumptions
taken by regulators that glyphosate does not remain in the body at levels that
can cause harm.
In summary, glyphosate
is almost ubiquitous in our environment and in people and livestock; it has
even been discovered in hospital feeding tubes for child cancer patients in the
US . The impacts are described below.
A birth defect epidemic in people and
Argentina is one of the biggest
cultivators of GM soybeans and the country has witnessed a sharp increase in
serious illnesses since cultivation began. Concerned doctors and health
practitioners founded the Network of Physicians of Crop Sprayed Towns and met
in 2010. They presented data showing increased incidence of
birth defects, spontaneous abortions, infertility, still births, cancers,
Down’s syndrome, mental disability, immune and endocrine disorders, as well as
acute effects such as increased convulsions in epileptic patients at time of
fumigation, respiratory and dermatological problems (see  ) and  Pesticide Illnesses and GM Soybeans, SiS53 )
The Network, together with a large citizen movement, is pushing for a
complete ban on aerial spraying of agrochemicals plus a ban of its use within a
kilometre of residential areas. They documented a 2-5 times increase in birth
defects in sprayed towns compared to before spraying began. Common defects
include neural tube defects, which are replicated in laboratory studies on
glyphosate (see later).
A 2013 report from
the Centre of Congenital defects claims that nationally, the number of cases
has not gone up, but a closer scrutiny gives a different picture. Data gathered
during a 6 month period from the hospital Maternidad Provincial in Córdoba
showed that despite recording a low level of
birth defects of 36 out of a total of 2140 births (1.68 %), 22 of those came
from mothers living in crop-sprayed towns, which accounts for 61 % of all the
birth defects (see ).
The US has seen a
surge in neural tube birth defects (anencephaly) in the Yakima River,
Washington State. The source remains a mystery to officials who have ruled out
common causes such as low folic acid and lifestyle choices. Rates have reached
8 cases per 10 000 births from 2010-2013 compared to a national average of 3
cases per 10 000 births. Glyphosate has emerged as a prime suspect as the
state of Washington use herbicides, most often glyphosates, to kill noxious
weeds in both land and water. An estimated 146 pesticides were applied in the area in the year 2000, and studies
are now needed to confirm whether or not glyphosate, either alone or in
combination with other chemicals is responsible for neural tube defects in the
Reproductive problems such as miscarriages and
infertility have also risen in Argentina (see
& Human Male Infertility, SiS 62). Physicians of sprayed towns have recorded as many as
23 % of women suffering from miscarriage in the last 5 years .
The latest victims of
Argentina’s chemical agricultural system, of which GM cultivation is an extreme
example, could very well have been spared if the evidence of the teratogenic
properties of glyphosate produced by industry since the
1980s had not been dismissed . Monsanto’s
own toxicology tests submitted to the EU commission showed evidence of
teratogenicity (see EU Regulators and Monsanto Exposed for Hiding Glyphosate
Toxicity, SiS51). The submitted test reports describe rats and
rabbits with skeletal abnormalities including the development of a 13th
rib in offspring, as well as cardiac abnormalities. Scientific studies such as
that of the late Professor Andrés Carrasco reporting neural tube birth defects in frog and chick embryos
exposed to agricultural concentrations of glyphosate  have validated both Monsanto’s findings and clinical
observations (see also  Lab Study Establishes Glyphosate Link to Birth Defects, SiS48). Probing into the mechanisms underlying the defects,
Carrasco discovered that glyphosate disrupted retinoic acid
activity, a well-known regulator of developmental processes.
studies have linked increased incidence of birth defects (spina bifida,
circulatory/respiratory anomalies, tracheo-esophogeal defects, gastrointestinal
defects, urogenital defects, cleft lip, adactyly, clubfoot, musculoskeletal
anomalies, Down's syndrome and other birth defects) and reproductive toxicity
in those who live near agrochemical-sprayed fields [25-27] while other lab
studies are accumulating evidence of birth defects and reproductive toxicity in
a range of animals from rats to catfish [28-31].
Evidence from the
farm follows the same pattern. Ib Borup Pedersen recently documented personal
experiences on his pig farm, where
removing GM soybean feed from the diet resulted in pronounced improvement in
the health of his pigs, reducing medicine use by a third
and increasing his profits (see  "Changing from
GMO to Non-GMO Natural Soy, Experiences from Denmark, SiS 64). Profits
were also increased due to his sows living longer and giving birth to more
piglets. After researching glyphosate and GMOs Ib investigated further and
collaborated with scientists in Germany who analysed 38 of his 1-day old
deformed piglets, finding glyphosate in various organs of the pigs. Pigs
suffered defects ranging from severe to mild, including spinal, cranial defects
and others affecting limbs, gender, internal organs, tongue and more. Many
appear to be neural tube defects as seen in the clinic and laboratory.
Cancer rates skyrocket in South American
regions of GM cultivation
Neighbourhood resident organisations such
as the association of Mothers of Ituzaingo, in collaboration with the
Network of Sprayed Towns have been mapping cancer incidence in their towns for
many years to draw attention to the epidemic they are facing. It is has reached
the point where now, 30 % of all deaths in these regions are from cancers,
affecting both adults and children. Cities such as Hernando have seen a 258 %
rise in cases between 2001-2002 and 2010-2012 .
Rises in cancer
rates can be explained by glyphosate’s role in cancer-causing mechanisms
including DNA damage and endocrine disruption. Endocrine disruption may well
also underlie some of the reproductive and teratogenic effects of glyphosate
described above. Lab studies show glyphosate damages DNA in lab animals as well as in people who
were exposed to the chemical in Argentina [33-35]. It
also disrupts cell cycle regulation that can lead to increased cell division
and cancer development [36,37]. The glyphosate metabolite AMPA was also shown in a 2014
study to induce DNA damage in fish at concentration ranges previously
documented in streams and surface water in N. America . Glyphosate’s carcinogenic potential has
been documented since the 1980s (see  Glyphosate & Cancer, SiS 62)
Distinct from DNA
damaging properties, glyphosate also mimics oestrogen at very low levels and
promotes the growth of hormone-dependent breast cancer cell lines .
Actually glyphosate is an endocrine disruptor and alters the expression of
multiple hormones including testosterone, leutinising hormone, follicle-stimulating hormone, and the aromatase enzyme
complexes that convert testosterone to
oestrogen [31, 42, 42].
studies corroborate lab studies and reports from local citizens in Argentina
and the US [43-45]. The Ministry of Health of Córdoba in Argentina reported in
June 2014 the doubling of cancer cases in high
agrochemical use areas compared to the national average . Consistently, a new meta-analysis found association between
glyphosate and cancers following occupational exposure . The
study looked at all epidemiological papers on non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL)
incidence that had been published in English since 1980 that reported
agricultural, occupational exposure to specific pesticides. A total of 44
papers were analysed, covering 80 active ingredients and 21 pesticide
chemicals, finding the strongest associations between pesticides and specific
subtypes of NHL, including an association between glyphosate and B lymphoma.
They also found that phenoxy herbicides, carbamate insecticides,
organophosphorus insecticides and the active ingredient lindane, an
organochlorine insecticide, were positively associated with NHL.
The most comprehensive GMO feeding study to date carried
out by Gilles-Eric Séralini and his team, looked at the effects glyphosate and glyphosate tolerant
maize NK603 on rats during their life-time (2 years). It showed increased
incidence of tumours (including cancers), other illnesses, as well as reduced life-span and altered hormone status .
The 2012 publication was aggressively attacked by industry and its supporters
and unilaterally and illicitly retracted a year after publication following the
appointment of an ex-Monsanto employee as an editor for the journal (see 
Study Violates Science and Ethics, SiS 61). It has subsequently been republished elsewhere  after massive public protest (see 
Open Letter on
Retraction and Pledge to Boycott,SiS 61).
Fatal kidney disease epidemic across
continents foreseen by lab studies
Kidney disease has reached epidemic levels in regions
that heavily use glyphosate such as farmers in Sri Lanka and sugar cane workers
in Central America. Kidney problems have been
highlighted by scientific studies, including Séralini’s rat feeding study where
kidney tumours were observed . A meta-analysis of feeding studies conducted
by Séralini’s lab revealed kidney pathology in animals fed Roundup Ready
soybeans, while in vitro studies have shown that glyphosate had
cytotoxic effects on human embryonic kidney cell lines [52,53] (see 
GM Feed Toxic, Meta-Analysis Confirms, SiS52,  Death by
multiple poisoning ,glyphosate and Roundup, SiS 42).
In Sri Lanka,
chronic kidney disease of unknown aetiology (CKDu) has afflicted the
agricultural population in recent years. A study published in 2014 linked
glyphosate-based herbicides to the epidemic. It appears that hard water in the
agricultural regions leads to heavy metal toxicity in the kidneys
via glyphosate’s metal chelating activity, and is responsible for the 400 000
cases of the disease and 20 000 fatalities 
(see  Sri Lanka Partially
Bans Glyphosate for Deadly Kidney Disease Epidemic, SiS 62). The government temporarily banned
glyphosate from hard water areas, but this decision was reversed due to a lack
of agricultural workers to take over the manual weeding required without the
application of glyphosate. Similar health problems are widely affecting
communities in Central America with one in four sugar
cane workers reporting kidney disease in some areas [58, 59]. This epidemic
forced the El Salvador government to call for international help after the
epidemic began overwhelming the health systems. The El Salvadorian government
has since approved legislation to ban glyphosate herbicides, though this is
yet to be enforced.
Digestive illnesses widespread
Digestive illnesses plagued the pig farm in Denmark
(mentioned earlier) while they were being fed GM soy. When
GM produce and glyphosate were removed from their diet, the pigs no longer
suffered chronic diarrhoea, which was so severe that 30 % of new born piglets
were dying as a result (see ). Chronic botulism, caused by the Clostridium
botulinum bacteria, has also been on the rise in livestock in Germany, the
US, and UK since the 1990s . The latest study shows that glyphosate results
in dysbiosis of the cow gut, with a reduction of beneficial bacteria in the
rumen of cows accompanied by a rise in C. botulinum microbes .
illnesses in livestock mirrors a growing health problem in the West, particularly in the US where food intolerances, allergies,
celiac disease, bowel diseases, infections
and other problems continue to become more common.
Nancy Swanson and colleagues showed a clear correlation between spikes in both inflammatory bowel disease and intestinal
infection with glyphosate in the US . Deaths from intestinal infections
have risen from less than 0.25 deaths per 100 000 in
1979 to over 80 deaths per 100 000 in 2010. Inflammatory bowel disease has
risen from around 3 diagnosed cases per 100 000 in 1990 to almost 90 per 100
000 in 2010. Moms across America’s testimonials reflect the evidence from the
farm and science studies, with children who come off GM and glyphosate
covered foods reducing the severity of allergy symptoms as well as other
problems such as regular vomiting . With glyphosate’s antibiotic
properties, it had already been previously shown to
cause disruption of the gut bacteria in poultry, swine and cows [64-66]. Salmonella
and Clostridium are highly resistant to glyphosate, whereas Enterococcus,
Bifidobacteria, and Lactobacillus are especially susceptible.
Perturbation in the balance of these microbial species is associated with
digestive disorders such as celiac disease. Similarly, chronic botulism in cows
is rectified in livestock by feeding fermented and pro-biotic foods along with
charcoal and humic acids. These both bind to the toxins produced by the
bacterial pathogen. This treatment also reduces the urinary content of
glyphosate, suggesting its binding as an underlying mechanism in the recovery
of the infection (see ).
Autistic people are
well known to have disturbed intestinal function and dysbiosis of the gut. Autism rates are also spiking in parallel with
glyphosate use in the US and glyphosate’s antibiotic activity may well be an
underlying mechanism behind this. Indeed, mothers have also documented much
improved autism symptoms in their children upon giving them a glyphosate and
Health of American citizens deteriorating
One argument for the safety of GM food and their
associated pesticides is that the US has been consuming them for years without
ill effect. However, in the absence of labelling GM foods, it is illegitimate
to make such a claim. On the contrary, there has been a drastic deterioration
of public health in the US since GM crops were introduced. A new publication by
Swanson and colleagues plots the rise of 20 chronic diseases using available US
government data, all correlating closely with increasing glyphosate application
to corn and soy crops, especially over the past several years. The diseases
included cancers, Parkinson’s, autism, obesity, diabetes, heart disease,
digestive disease and kidney failure . Correlation does not prove
causation, but such strong association certainly cannot be dismissed,
especially in combination with the plethora of other evidence from laboratory
studies, and the experiences of doctors in their clinics and farmers in the
fields. For a detailed analysis of the study
please see  Marked
Deterioration of Public Health Parallels Increase in GM Crops and Glyphosate
Use, US Government Data Show ( SiS
Though heart disease had not
been studied as extensively as cancers and birth defects in relation to glyphosate, the above study implicates its role in cardiac
dysfunction. This is corroborated by the new finding that glyphosate
formulations cause abnormal heart rhythms (arrhythmia) by interfering with the
electrical activity of heart cells in rabbits .
A new study
published in 2015 finds a correlation between glyphosate use and pineal gland
pathology. The pineal gland is located in the brain and is known to regulate
circadian rhythm through melatonin secretion. Glyphosate is hypothesised to
disrupt melatonin metabolism, as well as induce pineal gland neuropathology
through aluminium-induced hypoxia that results from the metal chelating
properties of glyphosate. In this way, glyphosate use tightly correlates with
the rises in sleep disorders as well as other disorders with symptoms of sleep
dysfunction such as autism and dementia .
It is becoming
clear that glyphosate has multiple toxicities that link it to many diseases
through its metal chelating, antibiotic, endocrine disrupting, and genotoxic properties. Glyphosate also has the ability to block
cytochrome P450 (CYP) enzyme activity, a class of enzymes involved in
detoxifying xenobiotics amongst other things. Glyphosate therefore not only is
a toxin in its own right, but enhances the toxicity of other chemicals by
preventing the CYP enzymes from detoxifying the body .
definitely getting sicker in numerous ways highly correlated with adopting GM
crops and rise in glyphosate use  and, as shown by all the testimonials from Moms across America, peoples’ health
improves after removing GMOs and glyphosate residues from their foods by buying
Environmental toxicity a concern for biodiversity,
agriculture and sustainability
The spread of glyphosate-resistant weeds is
increasingly compromising the effectiveness of the herbicide.
There are now a reported 31 species of resistant weeds, up from 23 a year ago
as recorded by the Weed Science organisation in the US . In Brazil, an
aggressive spread of weeds prompted a former DuPont agronomist to acknowledge
the difficulties faced by farmers cultivating glyphosate-tolerant GM crops both
in Brazil and Argentina . Monsanto now recommends an ‘integrated weed
management’ strategy that includes tilling the soil (of previously no-till
land) and using multiple herbicides. The main selling points of Monsanto’s
Roundup Ready (RR) GM crop system was to reduce environmental damage through
no-tillage agriculture and glyphosate use – a supposedly ‘safe’ herbicide
compared to older chemicals. Not only is glyphosate toxic to health and the
environment, but a cocktail of even more lethal herbicides have to be deployed
to deal with glyphosate-resistant weeds, and an end to no till agriculture,
resulting in further soil erosion. In short, we have an ecological and
Glyphosate toxicity to wildlife is well-documented. Many species, including
aquatic organisms, reptiles, beneficial soil organisms including certain
microbes and worms have been shown in scientific studies to be affected by
glyphosate exposure (see  Ban GMOS Now, ISIS special report). This includes chronic
and acute toxicity to the model aquatic organism Daphnia magna at below
accepted thresholds for glyphosate presence in US freshwater . Amphibians,
the most endangered animals in the world, are so sensitive to glyphosate that
78 % of frogs died in one study on being exposed to Roundup herbicide .
Glyphosate has also been shown to stimulate the growth of soil fungi, increase
the pathogenicity of soil pathogens such as Xylella fastidosa while
numerous beneficial soil organisms have been decimated  (see  Scientists Reveal
Glyphosate Poisons Crops and Soil, SiS 47). The latest
study on soil organisms concluded that non-target organisms are at risk of local
extinction after finding sub-lethal doses of glyphosate reduced fertility as
well as survival of juvenile and adult E.fetida worms . Monarch
butterfly decline has been linked to glyphosate
destruction of the milkweed in the US, the only food source for its larvae. Their migration from the US is at an all-time low and has
been declining for the last 17 years (1994-5 to 2010-2011) (see  Glyphosate and
Monarch Butterfly Decline, SiS
52) . This decline has prompted a move to protect the butterflies under the
Endangered Species Act by over 200 organisations and 40 scientists in November
2014 . A new report on a Welsh nature reserve documents the decline in
insects including beneficial pollinators such as bees as glyphosate levels
increase (see  How Roundup
Poisoned my Nature Reserve, SiS 64).
Not only are non-target organisms negatively
affected, but also the target crops. Glyphosate’s metal chelating properties
reduce the micronutrients available to the plant, which it needs to maintain a
fully-functioning immune system, thereby increasing its susceptibility to
disease. This mechanism is thought to underlie the spread of over 40 crop
diseases in glyphosate-tolerant GM crops (see  USDA scientist reveals All, SiS53). Indeed, USDA senior scientist Don Huber states that
glyphosate’s ability to kill plants is through the destruction of their immune
system. This was clearly demonstrated by his experiments showing that non-GM
plants grown in a sterile soil do not die when sprayed with glyphosate as the
pathogens are not thereto take advantage of the compromised immune
A reduction in
mineral nutrients has health impacts on those eating the crops such as
abnormalities in calves that are caused by manganese deficiency, which are on
the rise and may well result from glyphosate chelation . Farm animals are
further suffering from other illnesses (and birth defects) as described by the
Danish pig farmer earlier. Similar problems have been reported in Germany,
where cows are suffering from chronic infections such as botulism  and in
the US, with for example, the veterinarian Art Dunham reporting botulism in
dairy cows, as well as reproductive problems, bloody bowels, rickets and viral
diseases in hogs .
As a result of the
problems faced by farmers, many are now moving away from GM and
glyphosate-based systems. The US is seeing a growth in the non-GM seed market
(see  Global Status of
GMO and non-GMO crops, SiS
62). Agriculture experts such as Howard Vlieger are helping 300-400 farmers in the
US switch from GM to non-GM crops without glyphosate use
due to its ill effects to soil, plants and animals . Glyphosate-tolerant crops have also been shown to need more
water and do worse in drought situations (see  GM Crops and Water
– A recipe for DisasterSiS
56, and  GM Crops Destroyed by US Drought but non-GM Varieties
Flourish, SiS56). This is consistent with their health
being compromised by glyphosate.
While GM crops are causing
problems for farmers, non-GM crops are leading the way in providing drought-
and salt-tolerant varieties, which makes sense when one considers that the
majority of traits are highly complex, involving multiple genes and pathways
and therefore too complicated to mimic with crude genetic engineering
techniques (see  Genetic
Modification Trails Conventional Breeding By Far, SiS 64).
Regulatory science corrupt, ban
Glyphosate re-assessment by the EU commission was
performed in 2014, not only re-approving glyphosate,
but approving increased residue levels for food and feed, with the final
decision expected in 2015. The reassessment was performed by industry,
though Germany acted as the rapporteur state, submitting the renewal assessment
report to the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) (see Scandal of Glyphosate Re-assessment in Europe(SiS63). This report relied on summary assessments provided by the
Glyphosate Task Force which consists of Monsanto and other chemical companies
such as Syngenta UK and Dow Italy. Assessments were made on glyphosate
excluding commercial formulations most frequently used such as Roundup, and
focused on studies showing less toxic results.
It has been well-documented and
previously explained in Ban GMOS Now, that
adjuvants present in glyphosate formulation products such as POEA, as well as
glyphosate metabolites like AMPA have their own toxicity and moreover, that
glyphosate and the adjuvants together are far more
toxic than glyphosate alone. A new 2014 study by Professor Séralini’s group
further confirms this, showing for the first time that glyphosate formulation
products (as well as insecticide and fungicides) are far more toxic than
glyphosate alone at concentrations well below agricultural dilutions .
Using human cell lines (HEK293, JEG3 and HepG2), they showed
formulations to cause significant reductions in cell viability at concentrations
125 times less than glyphosate alone, challenging the relevance of the current
acceptable daily intake (ADI). It is important to note that studies on the
effects of pesticide cocktail mixtures, a far more likely scenario in real
life, have yet to be properly investigated.
The evidence of glyphosate toxicity to both human and
animal health and the ecosystem has built up to such an extent that some
governments are taking action. As mentioned earlier, both El Salvador and Sri
Lanka have made steps towards banning the herbicide. The Netherlands
successfully banned its sale to private individuals . Russia has recently
decided to ban the import and cultivation of all GM crops due to health and
environmental concerns , while a section of the Chinese army has reportedly
banned its consumption . In Brazil a
public prosecutor is also looking to suspend its use .
For those of us who
are not being protected by our governments, it is time to start initiating our own campaigns, banning it first from our
home, our community, our schools, local counties, regions.
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Amyan Macfadyen Comment left 19th January 2015 18:06:50 /these facts seem undeniable and should be MUCH more widely disseminated. The big questino is how to do this without legal action by Monsanto and so as to lead to real acion, They woud have all the funds needed to resist such action, What is the legal position?
Naomi Zürcher Comment left 23rd January 2015 13:01:13 I agree with the first comment that such information needs to be widely distributed,
Since Monsanto is the present devil incarnate, it behooves all of us to not allow the threat of legal action to disseminate this information by whatever means is available to each of us.
I will send this article to as many us elected officials that I can access in the hope that there is enough common sense and public caring left in one of them that they will take this and run with it.
I also shared Sparc's contact information with the Cornucopia Institute - a fantastic US organization representing organic farming and farmers. Such organizations have established networks for dissemination of invaluable information such as this article.
Thank you, Sparc.
Sherwood Botsford Comment left 6th February 2015 11:11:38 A consistent error throughout the article. A microgram per liter is a part per billion, not a part per trillion.
Will Murray Comment left 6th February 2015 11:11:35 Can you please send me addresses, emails to members of congress that I could write a letter to explaining that I oppose GMOs and the use of herbicides , pesticides and any solution with glyphosate?
MaeWan Comment left 6th February 2015 11:11:31 Hi Sherwood, We are always pleased when readers point out errors to us. But please note that the error of equating ug/L with parts per trillion instead of parts per billion occurred only in one place, which is now corrected, the other ppts cited were correct.
Monica Cassels Comment left 15th March 2015 22:10:20 I live in a residential area on the outskirts of Salta city, northwestern Argentina, which until just three years ago was agricultural land. It had been pasture land for milk cows, with no chemical treatment, until 12 years ago when, for nine consecutive years, black beans were grown on herbicide-treated soil. The summer following the first bean sowing there was a noticeable reduction in the number of frogs and toads characteristic of the area. And by the fourth year, very few of these animals were left. Now, three years after the land has been left fallow (although 'barren' might be a better word) the sound of a croaking toad is an event for celebration, and there are no more frogs chirping in piping in pudles, ponds and trees. The once joyful summer nights' symphony is now a sterile silence; we no longer hear the high-pitched chittering of bats, nor the hissing and hooting of owls. But our President returned from her last trip to the U.S.A. last year proudly proclaiming she had signed an agreement with Monsanto for the establishment of their pesticide factories in Argentina. How much Monsanto contributed to Mrs. Kirchner's personal wealth with this deal is a matter of speculation; but the damage already done by this company BASF, Syngenta and others is incalculable; and what lies ahead is material for horror stories unless the nation finally awakes from the torpor into which it has been cast by corrupt government.
Debbie Comment left 8th June 2015 19:07:46 There are many ways to fight this but the best (i think) is to support local farmers who raise their livestock and crops sustainably (no chemicals). It doesn't need to be organic - small farms usually can't afford that- but they often are grown without chemicals. Find out and buy from them, especially meat products.
If companies cannot make a profit selling their gmo foods, game over!
Nick Wall Comment left 10th June 2015 07:07:07 Hi do you have a list of labs that can properly test for glyphosate and AMPA in dairy products? If so can you forward it to me please as we wish to get some independent testing done on locally produced milks.
Deb Beck Comment left 12th July 2015 13:01:51 I try to garden and raise live stock as sustainably as possible. I grass feed my animals and grow all my own meat, milk, cheese, and eggs, and most of my own veggies. I harangue people on the Dairy Pure (Monsanto Milk) board and I can't believe how much they believe that Monsanto and GMO's are just fine and dandy. I could quote a lot of the facts in this article but I need short blubs that can make my point more easily to this misinformed lot. Also can you give me info on law suits aimed at Monsanto for allowing their GMO pollution to spread across the globe? I encourage GMO opponents to go the Dairy Pure web site and join in the fun harassing these people with the truth about GMO and money grubbing Monsanto. Thank you and keep up the good fight.
mente Comment left 19th December 2015 18:06:35 El articulo traducido al español esta disponible aqui: