Glyphosate Controversy Deepens

In 2015, the World Health Organization’s cancer agency, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), issued a report concluding that glyphosate is ‘probably carcinogenic to humans.’ More recent studies by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the European Chemical Agency (ECHA) concluded that there is not enough evidence to support the link between glyphosate and cancer risk. Currently glyphosate, which is the most widely used herbicide in the word, is authorized for use in the EU until December 2022. However, it remains controversial. The national authorities of France, Hungary, the Netherland, and Sweden collectively formed the Assessment Group on Glyphosate and are reviewing evidence submitted by companies seeking continued approval. Their determination is that glyphosate cannot be considered a carcinogen and that it has no effect on the reproduction. The AGG supports authorization for the use of Glyphosate beyond 2022.

Currently IARC is the only agency that has determined that glyphosate poses a carcinogenic risk. Many other agencies have concluded that glyphosate is not carcinogenic. The list includes the US Environmental Protection Agency, Health Canada, German Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicine Authority, Environmental Protection Authority (New Zealand), and the Food Safety Commission of Japan. Glyphosate is known to be less toxic than the herbicides it replaces.

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Picture Credit Susanne Kuehne

Posted on 13 August 2021