Does Quacker and Kelloggs UK products contain the carcinogen?
Can spraying Roundup in your garden put you at risk?
Glyphosate is currently one of the most argued about products that the world’s biggest biotech company, Monsanto; sells and distributes across the globe. They go to extraordinary lengths to ensure their products are cleared of any charges of causing harm to biological life, including that of humans.
But, their practices of suing everyone and every country that investigates their products and funding their own scientific research which always clears their products; is akin to the action of the Tobacco Industry throughout the 1950s in covering up that smoking causes cancer.
Here, the Environmental Working Group, a pressure group within the USA, reports on the findings of a new analysis from the peer-reviewed scientific journal Environmental Sciences Europe which documents the diametrically different approaches the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the World Health Organization took when determining the cancer risk from exposure to Monsanto’s weed killer glyphosate.
The report shows that the EPA ignored a large number of peer-reviewed independent studies that link glyphosate to cancer in humans, instead using research paid for by Monsanto to support the agency’s position that glyphosate is not carcinogenic.
In contrast, in 2015, after reviewing extensive U.S., Canadian and Swedish epidemiological studies on glyphosate’s human health effects, as well as research on laboratory animals, WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer, or IARC, classified the chemical as “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
“IARC’s evaluation relied heavily on studies capable of shedding light on the distribution of real-world exposures and genotoxicity risk in exposed human populations, while EPA’s evaluation placed little or no weight on such evidence,” wrote Charles Benbrook, Ph.D., the author of the new study.
As the new study details, the EPA relied largely on studies paid for by Monsanto and other agrochemical companies, ignoring the large and growing body of independent research connecting the chemical with genotoxicity.
Genotoxicity is the damaging effect a chemical can have on DNA, triggering mutations that can lead to cancer. IARC scientists reviewed 118 different assays and found strong evidence that glyphosate may cause genotoxicity.
The EPA’s assessment included fewer than half of these studies, allowing the agency to express its position that glyphosate is “not likely carcinogenic.”
Since the IARC assessment, an additional 26 of 27 published studies have reported evidence that glyphosate can be genotoxic. In 2017, glyphosate was listed by California’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment as a chemical known to the state to cause cancer.
“The fact that the EPA relied largely on Monsanto’s own research to reach the conclusion glyphosate doesn’t cause cancer could be turned into a skit on The Daily Show,” said Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., senior science advisor for children’s environmental health at EWG. “Allowing a company like Monsanto, with a long and damaging history of deception, to influence the EPA’s assessment of its own product is outrageous.”
Glyphosate, marketed by Monsanto as Roundup, is one of the most widely used herbicides in the U.S. and worldwide. The German crop chemical and drug company Bayer bought Monsanto last year and has since dropped the former company’s name from the product.
Last year, EWG commissioned two rounds of testing for the presence of glyphosate in popular oat-based cereal and other oat-based foods marketed to children. Of the 73 conventional product samples that EWG tested, all but two contained the weedkiller.
More than 225,000 people have signed a petition from EWG and Just Label It calling on General Mills, Quaker and Kellogg’s to get glyphosate out of their products. EWG and a number of food and nutrition companies have petitioned the EPA to sharply limit glyphosate residues allowed on oats and prohibit its use as a pre-harvest drying agent.
Companies signing the petition include MegaFood, Ben & Jerry’s, Stonyfield Farm, MOM’s Organic Market, Nature’s Path, One Degree Organic Foods, Happy Family Organics, Patagonia, PCC Community Markets and Amy’s Kitchen.
British consumers, may be well placed to note the products imported from the USA that contain glyphosate in food!
But it is not just in food, it is also a possible risk to those who use the likes of Roundup as a weed killer in their gardens! Roundup is Glyphosate in it's most common form in consumer products used in the gardens length and breadth of the UK.
This from the peer-reviewed scientific journal Environmental Sciences Europe report makes it clear, the greatest risk of dermal exposure is to those using a manual method of use of Roundup:
Recent regulatory judgements on glyphosate cancer risk in the US and Europe are based upon an assessment of general population, dietary exposures under typical conditions, and do not take into account, nor reflect a detailed evaluation of the sometimes much-higher levels of exposure that occur in a variety of occupational mixer/loader and applicator scenarios e.g. hand-held, backpack, ATV, and truck-mounted sprayers that require a person to hold and direct an application wand. Such applications lead to much higher dermal exposures compared to applicators working inside tractor or sprayer cabs.
In addition, applying a GBH many days per year for several hours per day inevitably leads to greater, routine dermal exposures, as well as more numerous incidents during which significantly greater than normal exposures occur because of a leaky hose or value, wind conditions, a spill, or other unusual or unforeseen circumstance.
Source: EWG / Environmental Sciences Europe