Last year, the World Health Organization announced that glyphosate–the world’s most widely used herbicide also known as Roundup–was a “probable human carcinogen.” Shortly thereafter, French officials banned sales of Roundup nationwide as Monsanto, Roundup’s manufacturer, prepared to stand trial for “crimes against humanity and the environment” in The Hague. The previous year, our own Government Accountability Office called out the Food and Drug Administration for its failure to test Roundup through the pesticide monitoring program because it was too “costly.” Then, studies released by private consumer groups like Moms Across America found that 70% of our water contained Roundup, and that our urine showed levels 10 times greater than that of Europeans. So really, what else could the FDA do?
It’s great to see a country take action on toxic chemicals–even if it’s not our own. After the United Nations called it a “probable human carcinogen,” France banned the sale of glyphosate–aka Roundup–at garden centers nationwide. The most widely sprayed herbicide on the planet, glyphosate is used in tandem with genetically modified “Roundup Ready” crops like corn and soybeans. According to Newsweek, as of 2012 Roundup was also the herbicide of choice for New York City parks. But the tide may be turning in America, too.
The most widely used herbicide in the world made headlines recently when the World Health Organization deemed it a “probable carcinogen.” Manufactured by Monsanto and marketed as Round-Up, the use of glyphosate has increased in tandem with genetically modified crops such as soybeans and corn, which can tolerate heavy sprayings of the chemical. The classification came after a WHO meeting of 17 experts representing 11 countries, according to the Wall St. Journal, which also cited a Monsanto spokesperson who said that the chemical is safe. But is it?
GMO proponents have long claimed that genetically modified seeds allow farmers to apply less chemical pesticides and grow healthier crops. But a recent study by Food & Water Watch shows GMO use has significantly increased the amount of herbicides dousing crops over the past 15 years. In honor of Mother’s Day, a new campaign by Just Label It positions moms against GMOs and targets Quaker–and its parent company PepsiCo–for fighting GMO labeling, now supported by 93% of Americans.