The Environmental Protection Agency ruled to allow higher amounts of the herbicide glyphosate, made by genetically modified foods leader Monsanto, in American oilseed and food crops. A number of studies have linked glyphosate exposure to cancer, Parkinson’s disease and infertility, according to MSN Now.
Glyphosate is the key ingredient in Roundup, a popular weed killer used in the United States and Europe. The EPA claims there is “insignificant evidence” that glyphosate causes cancer.
On May 1, the EPA ruled to increase traces of the herbicide on crops. Flax and soybeans, for example, used to contain only 20 parts per million of glyphosate. Now these crops can contain 40 ppm.
Independent scientist Anthony Samsel and MIT’s Stephanie Seneff wrote in a recent study on glyphosate that the “negative impact on the body is insidious and manifests slowly over time as inflammation damages cellular systems throughout the body.”
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They linked glyphosate to increased risk of developing heart disease, autism, cancer, Alzheimer’s, gastrointestinal disorders, obesity, diabetes, depression and infertility.
The EPA fact sheet does admit that chronic effects of glyphosate includes “kidney damage” and “reproductive effects.”
The EPA increase in the allowable amount of Roundup is related to the fact that GMO farmers are finding superinsects and superweeds in their fields. They plant geneticially modified seeds that should produce crops that are hardwired to kill pests, but instead the pests are becoming immune to the pesticides. Meanwhile the “Roundup Ready” crops are being attacked by superweeds that are now resistant to Roundup.
“Every year it will get worse,” said Tracy Franck, an Iowa farmer, to the Cedar Rapids-based Gazzette. “[We] are putting on more Roundup every year to kill the same amount of weeds.”
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Consumers have raised concerns about Monsanto’s GMO seed and have asked that labels be put on any items sold that contain GMO ingredients. Whole Foods is the first grocery store to respond to those calls and plans to have all GMO products on their shelves labeled in the coming years.
Monsanto is also under fire about concerns that they are unable to contain their GMO’s. About a month ago, Japan refused to buy U.S. wheat because a strain of Monsanto’s GMO wheat was found inexplicably growing in an Oregon field.