The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the cancer research arm of the World Health Organization (WHO), recently said that glyphosate — the world’s most widely used herbicide and the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup — was “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
Carcinogenicity Of Tetrachlorvinphos, Parathion, Malathion, Diazinon, And Glyphosate, The Lancet, May 2015 (register to gain free access)
Classification 2A = “probably carcinogenic to humans”
Classification 2B = “possibly carcinogenic to humans”
Countries with glyphosate restrictions:1
El Salvador has banned glyphosate.
The Netherlands has banned private sales of glyphosate.
Sri Lanka has a partial ban of glyphosate.
Colombia has banned aerial spraying with glyphosate.
Bermuda has banned imports of glyphosate.
France has banned over-the-counter sales of glyphosate-containing Roundup.
Swiss supermarket giants Coop and Migros will no longer sell products that contain glyphosate.
Germany is calling for an EU-wide ban on selling glyphosate for home use.
Brazil’s public prosecutor requested a ban on glyphosate following the WHO report.
Argentina’s union of doctors and health professionals, FESPROSA, demand a ban on glyphosate.
While in the US…
The EPA does not currently consider glyphosate carcinogenic. Over 750 products are known to contain glyphosate, and “in 2012, at least 283.5 million pounds of glyphosate were used in U.S. agriculture.”
While other countries are banning it, the US is increasing its use. The EPA recently raised the amounts of the herbicide allowed in fruits, vegetables, and seeds. Remember this? (EPA Quietly Raises Pesticide (Monsanto’s Roundup) Limits In Fruits and Vegetables, May 2013)
The carrots you purchased this morning could contain 25 times the amount of pesticide as carrots you purchased back in April. Sweet potatoes could have 15 times more pesticide. That’s because the EPA quietly issued a new rule, effective on May 1, 2013, which raised the allowed levels of the herbicide glyphosate in a number of common foods.
Glyphosate is produced by the Monsanto Corporation. It is the active ingredient in the popular weed killer Roundup. EPA created the new rule in response to a petition it received by Monsanto in May 2012 – Monsanto requested that foods be allowed to be sold with higher levels of glyphosate.
The USDA doesn’t test for glyphosate residues in food. But this independent group of researchers tested food products they purchased in and around Philadelphia. Most of the honey they tested (organic and non-organic) contained glyphosate.
Survey of Glyphosate Residues in Honey, Corn and Soy Products, Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology, November 2014
Of the 69 honey samples analyzed, 41 samples, or 59%, had glyphosate concentrations above the method LOQ (15 ppb), with a concentration range between 17 and 163 ppb and a mean of 64 ppb.
Eleven of the tested honey samples were organic; 5 of the organic honey samples, or 45%, contained glyphosate concentrations above the method LOQ, with a range of 26 to 93 ppb and a mean of 50 ppb.
Glyphosate concentrations above the method LOQ (75 ppb) were also found in 10 of the 28 soy sauce samples evaluated 36%, with a concentration range between 88 and 564 ppb and a mean of 242 ppb.
The method they used to measure glyphosate could only detect down to 15 ppb for honey and 75 ppb for soy sauce. There could still be pesticide residues in their food samples that weren’t detectable.
Did you see that Europe won’t allow any pesticides in baby food? The European Commission “requires that baby food contains no detectable levels of pesticide residues.” (EC” Foods For Infants & Young Children – Cereals And Other Baby Foods)
As I keep saying, promoting organic doesn’t work. When 90% of your crops are doused with pesticides, the chemicals become ubiquitous in the environment.
1 Endgame for Glyphosate? The Global Fallout of WHO’s ‘Probable Carcinogen’ Classification Centre for Research on Globalization, 12 June 2015