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EPA won’t approve warning labels for Roundup

In a press release last week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said it will “no longer approve product labels claiming glyphosate is known to cause cancer — a false claim that does not meet the labeling requirements of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA).


EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said, "It is irresponsible to require labels on products that are inaccurate when EPA knows the product does not pose a cancer risk. We will not allow California’s flawed program to dictate federal policy.”

Glyphosate was added to the Proposition 65 list in California in 2017, after the International Agency for Research on Cancer found the chemical to be an animal carcinogen as well as a probable human carcinogen. California regulation requires products with glyphosate to include a warning label that the product may be cancer-causing. The EPA’s decision targets that regulation, insisting Proposition 65 has “led to misleading labeling requirements for products, like glyphosate, because it misinforms the public about the risks they are facing.”

Bayer is facing more than 13,000 lawsuits from plaintiffs alleging that Roundup herbicide caused their cancer. Glyphosate is certainly a chemical worth of attention — it’s the most heavily used agricultural chemical in history. Glyphosate is virtually everywhere — in breastmilk, water, disposable diapers, honey, oatmeal, cereal, wine — and the list goes on.

Were the full ramifications of glyphosate fully understood, there's no doubt it would be banned. The question is, just how much evidence is needed? There's already ample research showing glyphosate can harm health in a wide variety of ways. For example:

Research published in 2007 found that aerial spraying of glyphosate in combination with a surfactant solution resulted in DNA damage in those exposed.

Research published in 2015 found that glyphosate in combination with aluminum synergistically induced pineal gland pathology, which in turn was linked to gut dysbiosis and neurological diseases such as autism, depression, dementia, anxiety disorder and Parkinson's disease.

Glyphosate inhibits pituitary release of thyroid stimulating hormone, which can lead to hypothyroidism.

Glyphosate chelates important minerals, including iron, cobalt and manganese. Manganese deficiency, in turn, impairs mitochondrial function and can lead to glutamate toxicity in the brain.

By impairing serotonin transport and killing beneficial gut bacteria (glyphosate is in fact an antibiotic), glyphosate may also contribute to a wide range of mood disorders, including major depression.

According to research, women exposed to higher glyphosate levels during pregnancy had babies born earlier and with lower adjusted birth weights.

And the list goes on. But according to the EPA, glyphosate is not a carcinogen, and “there are no risks to public health when glyphosate is used in accordance with its current label.”

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