California lists Glyphosate – the herbicide and active ingredient in Monsanto‘s popular weed killer Roundup – as a “cancer causing” chemical.
By Aaron Kesel
Glyphosate will be added to California’s Proposition 65 list of chemicals known to cause cancer effective July 7, the state’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) said.
Monsanto argues that the decision is “unwarranted on the basis of science and the law.”
However, Prop. 65, which was passed as a ballot initiative in 1986, looks to scientific research, not federal regulators, when deciding what to include on the list. The language of the law itself reads, “State government agencies have failed to provide them [California residents] with adequate protection” from chemicals that can cause cancer or reproductive harm.
This comes after a U.S. Judge Kristi Kapetan ruled against Monsanto’s legal challenge to block the labeling of its product in March.
Monsanto has a conflicting history on whether or not its Glyphosate chemical is safe or not.
In 2015, the World Health Organization’s IARC (International Agency for Research on Cancer) classified glyphosate as a ‘Group 2A’ carcinogen stating it’s “probably carcinogenic to humans.”
One year later, another organization, PAN, the Pesticide Action Network International, issued a 96-page report stating that glyphosate contaminates the Global Ecosystem. That same year the FDA suspended testing for glyphosate residues in food. Those foods, according to a subsequent report by Food Democracy Now! and the Detox Project, included many of America’s most popular foods including – cookies, crackers, popular cold cereals, and chips. The chemical was also found in several wines including organic wines, baby food and formula, breast milk and even tampons.
Glyphosate is also sprayed directly on many types of conventional crops before harvest, including wheat, oats, and barley. In all, glyphosate is used in some fashion in the production of at least 70 food crops, according to the EPA, including a range of fruits, nuts, and veggies.
Another study done by the WHO and UN experts at the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) conflicted the IARC report and found that “glyphosate did not cause cancer and pose a risk to humans.”
An additional report earlier this year by the European Chemical Agency agreed with the FAO study stating that glyphosate was “safe.” Meanwhile, scientists have found that exposing rats to ultra-low doses of Roundup caused liver and kidney damage.
It’s no real surprise that there is conflicting research since Monsanto is documented to have paid off Sir Richard Doll, a renowned cancer researcher, for 20 years. Even television personality Dr. Oz has said that Monsanto’s products could cause cancerous effects.
It’s time to ask ourselves, does the U.S. EPA have all of Monsanto’s hidden science regarding glyphosate and GMOs?
If the law does go into effect, it would require companies selling the chemical in the state to add warning labels to their packaging.
Related: Monsanto plans to take over marijuana industry
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