Decision slammed by health researcher
The US EPA has released its decision on glyphosate for the renewal of the registration of the herbicide. The EPA says it "continues to find that there are no risks of concern to human health when glyphosate is used in accordance with its current label". The EPA also says that glyphosate is "unlikely to be a human carcinogen".
Dr Charles Benbrook, project coordinator of the Heartland Study on the effects of herbicide spraying on birth outcomes and children's health, commented:
"I am flabbergasted at this decision. There is NOTHING - ZERO - in the EPA decision to reduce worker exposures and risks.
"How can EPA ignore the thousands of comments highlighting the need for EPA to recover its spine and require Bayer/Monsanto and other registrants to take out the high-risk surfactants in glyphosate-based herbicides (GBHs), so the GBHs sold in the US are as safe as the reformulated products now sold in Europe?
"And why did EPA not require registrants to add onto labels a requirement for mixer-loaders and applicators to wear gloves, long sleeve pants, chemical-resistant shoes (aka rubber boots), especially for applicators using hand-held equipment and spraying a GBH for several hours per day, over many days per year, as part of their job, or in keeping up with weeds on their rural property, homestead, or farm?
"This irresponsible action by EPA sets the stage for a concerted campaign by activists and public health advocates to ban all uses of GBHs. For obvious reasons, their prime target won't be this EPA, and will instead focus on major food companies, who won't need much of a push to follow in Kellogg's enlightened footsteps.
"Kellogg recently announced a commitment to end pre-harvest applications of GBHs on all crops used in its products. Ending such pre-harvest, desiccation uses will eliminate a significant share of the glyphosate residues now in the US food supply."