Another win for Monsanto: US raises allowable levels of company’s pesticide in crops

Biotech giant Monsanto has been awarded yet another victory by the federal government thanks to a recent Environmental Protection Agency decision to allow larger traces of the herbicide glyphosate in farm-grown foods.

Despite a number of studies linking exposure to the chemical with
diseases including types of cancer, the EPA is increasing the
amount of glyphosate allowed in oilseed and food crops.

The EPA announced their plans on May 1 and allowed critics two
months to weigh in and object to the ruling. Following little
opposition, though, the EPA is on path to soon approve of levels
of glyphosate being found in crops several times over the current
concentration.

Glyphosate, a weed-killing chemical developed by Monsanto in
1970, is the key ingredient in the company’s “Roundup” label of
herbicides. In the decades since, Monsanto has created and
patented a number of genetically-modified organisms and
genetically-engineered crops resisted to glyphosate that are sold
worldwide under the company’s “Roundup Ready” brand. Those GMO
products are then planted in fields where glyphosate, namely
Roundup, is used en masse to eliminate weeds from taking over
harvest. With scientists linking that chemical to cancerous
diseases, though, critics decry the EPA decision and caution it
could do more harm than good.

Through the EPA’s new standards, the amount of allowable
glyphosate in oilseed crops such as flax, soybeans and canola
will be increased from 20 parts per million (ppm) to 40 ppm,
which GM Watch acknowledged is over 100,000 times the
amount needed to induce breast cancer cells. Additionally, the
EPA is increasing limits on allowable glyphosate in food crops
from 200 ppm to 6,000 ppm.

Just last month, The Cornucopia Institute concluded a study by finding glyphosate “exerted
proliferative effects in human hormone-dependent breast
cancer
.” A similar study released in April concluded that
glyphosate enhances the damaging effects of other food borne
chemical residues and environmental toxins
.”

Negative impact on the body is insidious and manifests slowly
over time as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the
body
,” independent scientist Anthony Samsel and MIT’s
Stephanie Seneff concluded in the April study. “Consequences are most of the diseases and
conditions associated with a Western diet, which include
gastrointestinal disorders, obesity, diabetes, heart disease,
depression, autism, infertility, cancer and Alzheimer’s
disease
.”

Dr. Don M. Huber, emeritus professor of plant pathology at Purdue
University, found in yet another examination that “Glyphosate draws out
the vital nutrients of living things
,” in turn removing most
nutritional value from GMO foods.

A press release issued by the group Beyond Pesticides criticized
the decision as well. “Given that alternative methods of
growing food and managing weeds are available, like those that
exist in organic agriculture, it is unreasonable for EPA to
increase human exposures to Roundup
,” they wrote.

In the past, Monsanto has long-defended their use of the
chemical. “We are very confident in the long track record that
glyphosate has
,” Jerry Stainer, Monsanto’s executive vice
president of sustainability, stated previously. “It has been
very, very extensively studied
.”

Republished with permission from: RT