March 25, 2015


Monsanto denies possible health risk of glyphosate

Monsanto has slammed a World Health Organisation (WHO) agency's report for contradicting "decades" of scientific credibility after the latter reported that popular herbicide, glyphosate, is a "probable carcinogen".


Glyphosate is a main ingredient in the company's Roundup weed killer.


According to a report by researchers for WHO's International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), people exposed to glyphosate were affected by a higher incidence of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma than those without exposure.


In response, Monsanto called for the report to be retracted.


The IARC's report is not in line with the conclusions of scientific bodies which have studied the safety of glyphosate, said Phil Miller, Monsanto's vice-president of global affairs. Miller, as well as Brett Begemann, the COO of Monsanto, added that the regulatory status and sales of its glyphosate-based product will not be affected as the IARC is not a regulatory agency.


Furthermore, other organisations, including US and EU regulators, the US Environmental Protection Agency and two WHO agencies, have concluded that glyphosate posed little to no risk to human health.


Presently, Monsanto's herbicide-resistant genetically-modified (GM) crops is dependent on the use of glyphosate as a protection against weeds.


This is not the first time glyphosate has been implicated in controversial findings; a February report by the US-based Center for Food Safety claimed that the herbicide had adverse effects on the population of monarch butterflies.

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