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Preharvest Use of Glyphosate Poisons Kids' Food

"This article was previously published September 4, 2018, and has been updated with new information.

Glyphosate-based herbicides like Roundup are the most heavily used agricultural chemicals of all time, with 1.76 million tons being applied to U.S. fields alone between 1974 — when glyphosate was first approved — and 2014.1

By the end of 2021, glyphosate usage had expanded so much that worldwide glyphosate sales were forecasted to reach $4.95 billion by 2025.2 Paradoxically, in early 2022 some farmers are looking to develop alternative, non-herbicide weed-control measures due to an expanded market and pandemic- and hurricane-related supply problems that have caused supply shortages and driven up the cost of glyphosate.3

Since the popularity of this herbicide was built on reckless deceit,4 and there’s really no telling how many people around the world have paid for Monsanto’s lies with their lives, it seems rather karmic that the COVID-19 pandemic, of all things, is what’s driving farmers to farm more organically.

In August 2018, a jury ordered Monsanto to pay $289 million in damages to Dewayne Johnson,5,6,7,8 who developed a lethal form of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma following heavy exposure to Roundup during his work as a groundskeeper. The evidence brought forth in court was extensive and extraordinarily damning, clearly showing Monsanto — now owned by Bayer — acted with malice.

The jury decided Monsanto knew Roundup was toxic and caused cancer, yet hid that fact from regulators and the public, fabricating evidence to the contrary and suppressing research showing harm. A California appeals court later reduced the award to $20.5 million9 and in 2021 Bayer decided not to take that court’s decision to the U.S. Supreme Court, letting the final award stand10 You can review key documents from this case on the U.S. Right to Know website.11,12

You can also read "Spinning Science & Silencing Scientists: A Case Study in How the Chemical Industry Attempts to Influence Science,"13 a report prepared for U.S. House members of the Committee on Science, Space and Technology, which details some of the most important pieces of evidence.

’Nothing Short of a Cover-Up’

In a 2018 Highwire interview,14 Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and Brent Wisner, lawyers for some of these cases, said other disease categories could eventually be added to the growing mountain of lawsuits against Monsanto, as evidence suggested glyphosate and/or Roundup may also be linked to liver cancer, brain tumors and health problems associated with endocrine disruption.

“We’ve got hundreds of documents, far more damning than these, showing absolutely definitive misconduct” of Monsanto hiding Roundup’s risk to the public, Wisner told Bigtree. Since then, more than 5,000 additional plaintiffs quickly lined up for their own day in court,15 all alleging Roundup exposure caused their Non-Hodgkin lymphoma.

The cases soon began plodding through the courts, with another plaintiff, Edwin Hardeman, winning an $80 million judgment.16 Hardeman filed his case in 2016; his ruling came in 2019. When Bayer-Monsanto appealed the verdict, a federal court ruled against them, awarding Hardeman a little over $25 million after reducing the first jury’s punitive damages from $75 million to $20 million.17

With more than 25,000 cases pending by November 2021,18 Bayer asked the SCOTUS to review Hardeman’s case.19 Rather than just agreeing to hear the case, in December 2021, the SCOTUS deferred, and asked President Biden’s administration to help them decide whether they should hear it. Ironically, Monsanto-Bayer is still maintaining their product is safe, and their attitude drew the ire of environmental journalist Dave Dickey, who wrote in a February 2022 commentary:20

"In March 2015 U.S District Judge for the Northern District of California allowed public release of internal Monsanto documents showing how Monsanto influenced EPA to reclassify glyphosate from a Class C carcinogen to a Class E category which paved the way for glyphosate Roundup production.

It was nothing short of a cover-up that put greed ahead of public safety. And now ironically we learn the cover-up may have included Monsanto’s own investors … [who] are saying the German agri-giant played fast and loose with the facts, misleading them on 1) the safety of glyphosate and Roundup; 2) Bayer’s efforts at due diligence; and 3) the legal risks in the acquisition of Monsanto …

Given all we already know Roundup and glyphosate should have not been unleashed on the world. But how companies like Monsanto are willing to go to almost any length – including duping its own investors — is a new low."

On its website, Bayer has now posted a five-point plan to end the litigation,21 claiming the SCOTUS has “strong legal arguments” to rule in the company’s favor. And again, Monsanto-Bayer steadfastly insists not only that “glyphosate-based herbicides can be used safely and are not carcinogenic,” but that “a cancer warning would be false and misleading and misbrand the product.”

Glyphosate Found in Common Breakfast Foods and Snacks

Unfortunately, by 2018 the same chemical shown to cause Johnson’s lethal disease was also showing up in the food supply at potentially unsafe levels. The Environmental Working Group (EWG) commissioned independent laboratory tests to determine how much glyphosate is lurking in the U.S. food supply.

While the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has been testing foods for glyphosate, and tests reportedly revealed “a fair amount” of residues, their findings have not yet been made public.22

In fact, the USDA doesn’t even test for glyphosate in some of the foods most known for glyphosate contamination, such as oats and chickpeas.23 But EWG’s testing in 2018 revealed 43 out of 45 food products made with conventionally grown oats tested positive for glyphosate, 31 of which had glyphosate levels higher than EWG scientists believe would be protective of children’s health.

Examples of foods with detectable levels of glyphosate included Quaker Dinosaur Eggs instant oatmeal, Cheerios cereal, Nature Valley granola bars, Quaker steel cut oats and Back to Nature Classic Granola.

Further, of 16 organic oat foods tested, five contained glyphosate, although at levels below EWG’s health benchmark of 160 parts per billion (ppb). In 2016, tests24 conducted by the nonprofit organizations Food Democracy Now! and The Detox Project also found glyphosate residues in a variety of foods including Doritos, Oreos and Stacy’s Pita Chips.

Glyphosate has even been detected in PediaSure Enteral Formula nutritional drink, which is given to infants and children via feeding tubes. Thirty percent of the samples tested contained levels of glyphosate over 75 ppb — far higher levels than have been found to destroy gut bacteria in chickens (0.1 ppb).25

Children Likely Ingest Unsafe Levels of Glyphosate From Food

Exposure to glyphosate and glyphosate-based herbicide formulations, even at low levels, has been linked to a variety of health risks. For instance, one study found that daily exposure to ultra-low levels of glyphosate for two years led to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease in rats,26 while the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) determined that glyphosate is a “probable human carcinogen” in 2015.

As of July 2017, California’s Environmental Protection Agency’s Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) also listed glyphosate as a chemical known to cause cancer under Proposition 65, which requires consumer products with potential cancer-causing ingredients to bear warning labels. According to EWG:27

“OEHHA has proposed a so-called No Significant Risk Level for glyphosate of 1.1 milligrams per day for an average adult of about 154 pounds. That level of exposure is more than 60 times lower than the safety level set by the Environmental Protection Agency.”

Exposure to glyphosate at OEHHA’s risk level would present an increased lifetime risk of cancer of 1 in 100,000 for an adult, but EWG points out that an additional tenfold margin of safety may be necessary to protect those most vulnerable, like children and fetuses. Using this methodology, virtually all of the foods tested by EWG could be damaging to human health:28

"With this additional children’s health safety factor, EWG calculated that a 1-in-a- million cancer risk would be posed by ingestion of 0.01 milligrams of glyphosate per day. To reach this maximum dose, one would only have to eat a single 60-gram serving of food with a glyphosate level of 160 parts per billion, or ppb.

The majority of samples of conventional oat products from EWG’s study exceeded 160ppb, meaning that a single serving of those products would exceed EWG’s health benchmark …

The EPA has calculated that 1- to 2-year-old children are likely to have the highest [glyphosate] exposure, at a level twice greater than California’s No Significant Risk Level and 230 times EWG’s health benchmark."

Why so Much Glyphosate in the Food Supply?

Most of the more than 280 million pounds of glyphosate sprayed on American crop fields each year29 are used on genetically engineered (GE) crops30 like Roundup-ready corn and soybeans, which are designed to withstand the chemical’s otherwise lethal effects.

However, while choosing non-GMO foods would appear to be a good way to reduce your exposure to glyphosate, some grains, even if they’re not GE, can be heavily contaminated with glyphosate. The reason for this is because the chemical is also used as a desiccant and/or preharvest treatment to speed ripening.

Essentially, by spraying glyphosate on the grain right before harvest, it dries (desiccates) the grain, making it easier to harvest. Desiccation is also used to improve profits, as farmers are penalized when the grain contains moisture. The greater the moisture content of the grain at sale, the lower the price they get.

While GMOs have been considered the most heavily contaminated, since the glyphosate is inside each cell of the GE plant, the preharvest application of glyphosate on non-GMO grains appears to be the primary reason for why glyphosate is now found in virtually all foods tested.

It’s also found in air,31 rain, groundwater and soils,32 municipal water supplies,33 and urine.34 An independent study even found it in vaccines, including pneumococcal, Tdap, hepatitis B (which is injected on the day of birth), influenza and MMR.35

The MMR vaccine had the highest amounts at 2.671 ppb. Yet, when the investigating group, Moms Across America, asked the CDC and FDA to check into their findings with their own tests, they received a response with 50% of the pages redacted or blank.36

GMO and Non-GMO Grains Heavily Contaminated With Glyphosate

According to a 2017 study37 by University of California San Diego School of Medicine researchers, “The herbicide Roundup is sprayed onto genetically modified crops and applied as a desiccant to most small nongenetically modified grains.”

So, whether we’re talking about Roundup Ready GE crops or conventional, non-GE grains, glyphosate, the active ingredient in Roundup, “is found in these crops at harvest.” In a statement, a spokesperson for Quaker acknowledged that glyphosate is commonly used preharvest:38

"Glyphosate is commonly used by farmers across the industry who apply it preharvest. Once the oats are transported to us, we put them through our rigorous process that thoroughly cleanses them (dehulled, cleaned, roasted and flaked).

Any levels of glyphosate that may remain are significantly below any limits and well within compliance of the safety standards set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the European Commission as safe for human consumption."

However, EWG’s testing revealed one sample of Quaker oats with 1,300 ppb of glyphosate, and another with 1,100 ppb. Along with wheat and oats, other crops that are commonly desiccated with glyphosate include:

Lentils Peas Non-GE soybeans
Non-GE corn Flax Rye and buckwheat
Triticale Canola Millet
Sugar beets Potatoes Sunflowers

Why Do Farmers Use Glyphosate Preharvest?

Considering the toxicity of glyphosate and Roundup, using either as a desiccant is an unconscionable choice. As noted in a recent Producer article:39

"Cereals Canada and other industry groups have warned farmers that glyphosate is under increased scrutiny. Therefore, when producers use glyphosate as a harvest aid, they must carefully adhere to label guidelines to prevent unacceptably high residue levels in the grain.

When agronomists are asked about using glyphosate as a desiccant, the standard response is: ‘glyphosate is not a desiccant,’ which is tactful way of saying, ‘if a producer plans to desiccate, he should use an actual desiccant.’"

The Monsanto pamphlet "Preharvest Staging Guide"40 notes Roundup formulation “should not be used as a desiccant,” as Roundup brand herbicides “work slower than a desiccant.” Real Agriculture has also noted that “glyphosate is not a desiccant,” doing "very little to increase dry-down rates."41 Yet, some farmers continue to use it to help speed up their wheat, barley and oats harvests, even though it’s not registered as a desiccant.42

Overall, the application of glyphosate “will only speed up harvest by a few days,” Real Agriculture states. Still, applying glyphosate preharvest is a common practice to enhance ripening and some may use it as a desiccant anyway.43 Improper timing may also contribute to contamination.

As explained by Michigan State University Extension in "Preharvest Options for Soybeans,"44 it’s important to make sure that all pods have lost all green color before using Roundup for desiccating. Additionally, the “Preharvest applications of glyphosate are not recommended for soybeans grown for seed regardless of trait, and these applications will not control glyphosate-resistant weeds.”

General Mills Sued Over Glyphosate Residues

Farmers and food manufacturers better start reconsidering their use of glyphosate during preharvest, though, or prepare to face legal consequences. Just six days after Johnson’s win against Monsanto, a class-action lawsuit was filed against General Mills in Florida. According to Food Navigator-USA:45

"Plaintiff Mounira Doss argued that General Mills had a duty to disclose the presence of glyphosate in Cheerios cereal products, but failed to do so.

At 470 to 530 parts per billion, the levels of glyphosate Doss alleges were in Cheerios products tested by the Environmental Working Group in August 2018 are well below permitted EPA thresholds for glyphosate in grains (set at … 30,000 ppb in grains, cereal group 15).

However, Doss argues that ‘Scientific evidence shows that even ultra-low levels of glyphosate may be harmful to human health,’ and notes that glyphosate recently joined the Prop 65 list of chemicals ‘known to cause cancer …’ and was found by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) to be ‘probably carcinogenic to humans.’"

Are Other Desiccants Safe?

Aside from the off-label use of glyphosate, two commonly used registered desiccants are paraquat and diquat. The question is, are they any safer than glyphosate? Food is not tested for these or other desiccants, and neither has received much media coverage.

However, Politico46 pointed out that the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has expressed concerns over diquat, made by Syngenta. According to Politico, “the Swiss agrichemical giant has avoided an EU ban on the product after mounting a campaign to undermine the watchdog’s findings.”

Sound familiar? They’ve clearly taken a page right out of Monsanto’s playbook. Documents released by EFSA to Politico “show the [European] Commission twice withdrew a proposal to remove … diquat from the market after the company questioned the methodology behind EFSA’s science.”

According to EFSA,47 diquat poses severe risks to agricultural workers. The chemical has the ability to disrupt the human hormonal system, and in some cases "exposure to the product … exceeded acceptable levels by several thousand percent."48 It’s also been found to disrupt the reproductive cycles of both mammals and birds.

In the U.S., the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health has linked at least five deaths to the chemical, along with thousands of illnesses. British research49 has also found diquat is more likely to cause Parkinson’s than paraquat — a chemical that’s already been banned in the EU for its link to Parkinson’s.

Overall, desiccants are not necessarily a required part of farming. The harvest can dry naturally, but it takes longer, and therefore costs more. However, the question we really need to ask ourselves is: at what price speed and profit? Is it really worth poisoning the food just to speed up ripening and drying?

Bayer Hurt by yet Another Monsanto Mistake

In the week following Johnson’s verdict, Bayer stock fell by 18%, evaporating about $14 billion of the company’s market value (a loss equivalent to 21% of Monsanto’s total acquisition value).50 But Roundup toxicity wasn’t the only cause for the stock tumble.

Traders also cited mounting lawsuits over dicamba-related crop damage as a driving factor.51 For the third year in a row, huge swaths of land have been destroyed by chemical burns from this toxic weed killer.

As feared by many critics, any crop that is not genetically engineered (GE) to be resistant to dicamba is severely damaged by even small amounts of the herbicide — be it food crops, gardens or trees; even other GE crops resistant to herbicides other than dicamba shrivel and die in its presence.

Monsanto promised its XtendiMax with VaporGrip formula would be less volatile and less prone to drift than older versions, but this appears to be yet another Monsanto fantasy. In 2017, 3.6 million acres of non-GE soybeans — a total of 4 percent of all soy grown in the U.S. — were destroyed by dicamba drift, according to Reuters.52

As of July 2018, an estimated 1 million acres of nondicamba-resistant crops had been destroyed.53 By 2021, thousands of farmers had reported their crops damaged by dicamba drift as far away as a mile and a half from the dicamba-sprayed fields.54 Homeowners have also reported destruction of trees and private gardens.

Dicamba-resistant soy was supposed to replace the failed Roundup Ready line of soy but, according to Reuters,55 the EPA “is now weighing such complaints as part of a high- stakes decision on the herbicide’s future.”

Without the XtendiMax formula, the dicamba-resistant soy is unlikely to stand a chance, seeing how older dicamba formulations are strictly regulated and are not permitted during growing season due to their volatility (high drift potential).

In June 2020 an appeals court revoked the EPA’s 2018 extended approval of dicamba, stating that despite the fact that farmers who had pre-purchased the product could suffer some financial losses, the EPA had not provided sufficient evidence to support the approval.56

“In response, EPA approved new dicamba licenses with some additional control measures that it asserted met the court’s concerns,” Ohio State News reported. "Now the Biden administration is weighing how to address dicamba – and none too soon:"57

“Farmers reportedly are seeing weeds that have developed resistance to dicamba and other herbicides recommended for use with a new generation of genetically engineered seeds. According to weed specialists, this is happening precisely because farmers are using such large quantities of these chemicals during the growing season.”

Either way, it’s worth nothing that both Roundup and dicamba have been linked to Non- Hodgkin lymphoma,58 so whether we’re growing Roundup Ready or dicamba-resistant crops, both pose serious health risks.

It remains to be seen whether EPA will continue to extend its approval for XtendiMax, take it off the market or implement stricter limits on its use. Either of the latter two options would be another deep blow for Bayer, which now owns Monsanto’s portfolio of toxic flops and failures.

Monsanto-Bayer, as you’d expect, says it’s confident EPA will extend its approval, but also urged seed sellers “to contact [EPA] to express support for the product,” Reuters reports — a behind-the-scenes action that suggests they may not be quite as confident as they claim.

Where to Find Safer Food

There’s little doubt that the presence of herbicides and pesticides in food pose a health risk, especially to young children. To minimize the risks to your family, consider buying organic produce and certified grass fed animal products. As the saying goes, “money talks,” and to create change, we have to vote for the agricultural system we want with our pocketbooks.

While many grocery stores now carry organic foods, it’s preferable to source yours from local growers whenever possible, as much of the organic food sold in grocery stores is imported. If you live in the U.S., the following organizations can help you locate farm- fresh foods:

Demeter USADemeter-USA.org provides a directory of certified Biodynamic farms and brands. This directory can also be found on BiodynamicFood.org.
American Grassfed Association — The goal of the American Grassfed Association is to promote the grass fed industry through government relations, research, concept marketing and public education.

EatWild.comEatWild.com provides lists of farmers kown to produce raw dairy products as well as grass fed beef and other farm-fresh produce (although not all are certified organic).
Weston A. Price Foundation — Weston A. Price has local chapters in most states, and many of them are connected with buying clubs in which you can easily purchase organic foods, including grass fed raw dairy products like milk and butter.
Grassfed Exchange — The Grassfed Exchange has a listing of producers selling organic and grass fed meats across the U.S.
Local Harvest — This website will help you find farmers markets, family farms and other sources of sustainably grown food in your area where you can buy produce, grass fed meats and many other goodies.
Farmers Markets — A national listing of farmers markets.
Eat Well Guide: Wholesome Food From Healthy Animals — The Eat Well Guide is a free online directory of sustainably raised meat, poultry, dairy and eggs from farms, stores, restaurants, inns, hotels and online outlets in the United States and Canada.
Community Involved in Sustaining Agriculture (CISA) — CISA is dedicated to sustaining agriculture and promoting the products of small farms.
The Cornucopia Institute — The Cornucopia Institute maintains web-based tools rating all certified organic brands of eggs, dairy products and other commodities, based on their ethical sourcing and authentic farming practices separating CAFO “organic” production from authentic organic practices.
RealMilk.com — If you’re still unsure of where to find raw milk, check out Raw-Milk- Facts.com and RealMilk.com. They can tell you what the status is for legality in your state, and provide a listing of raw dairy farms in your area. The Farm to Consumer Legal Defense Fund59 also provides a state-by-state review of raw milk laws.60 California residents can also find raw milk retailers using the store locator available at www.OrganicPastures.com." https://www.organicconsumers.org/news/preharvest-use-glyphosate-poisons-kids-food?utm_medium=email&utm_source=engagingnetworks&utm_campaign=OB+745+Saturday&utm_content=OB+745+Saturday

1 Like

For Gerard and anyone following this issue.
From Dr Cremola, may be an update on a previous story.
The (about to disappear) link: Kidney Disease Results so Stunning They Quashed the Evidence?
ED

Kidney Disease Results so Stunning They Quashed the Evidence?

Story at-a-glance

  • Since 1980, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) has presented an annual award for Scientific Freedom and Responsibility to “scientists, engineers or their organizations, whose exemplary actions have demonstrated scientific freedom and responsibility in challenging circumstances”
  • The 2019 Scientific Freedom and Responsibility award was slated to be given to two human health researchers who have published papers linking glyphosate exposure to chronic kidney disease of unknown etiology in Sri Lankan farmers
  • According to the researchers, consumption of glyphosate-contaminated water may contribute to chronic kidney disease by facilitating the transport of heavy metals such as arsenic and cadmium into the kidneys
  • The AAAS award announcement in February 2019 incited a rash of criticisms by defenders of glyphosate, leading to the AAAS to issue a follow-up statement saying the AAAS was reassessing the award “after concerns were voiced by scientists and members”
  • Former AAAS president Nina Fedoroff has since become a shill for the biotech industry. In 2015, she joined the OFW Law firm — which lobbies for the agrochemical industry — as senior science adviser for agriculture policy, global food security and government affairs

This article was previously published February 20, 2019, and has been updated with new information.

Since 1980, the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) — the world’s largest scientific society and publisher of several journals, including Science — has presented an annual award for Scientific Freedom and Responsibility to “scientists, engineers or their organizations, whose exemplary actions have demonstrated scientific freedom and responsibility in challenging circumstances.” As explained on the AAAS website:1

"The types of actions worthy of this award include acting to protect the public’s health, safety or welfare; focusing public attention on important potential impacts of science and technology on society by their responsible participation in public policy debates; or providing an exemplary model in carrying out the social responsibilities of scientists, engineers or in defending the professional freedom of scientists and engineers.

Some awardees have risked their freedom and even physical safety by their actions, while others have been honored for their advocacy and their leadership."

2019 Award Winners

In 2019, the AAAS was slated to present the Scientific Freedom and Responsibility award to two human health researchers who have published papers linking glyphosate exposure to chronic kidney disease of unknown etiology (CKDu) in Sri Lankan farmers:

  • Dr. Sarath Gunatilake,2 former chair of the health science department at the University of California, whose areas of expertise include occupational and environmental health research.
  • Channa Jayasumana, Ph.D.,3 a faculty member of Medicine and Allied Sciences at the Rajarata University of Sri Lanka, who conducts research into nephrotoxins (kidney toxins) and the causes and treatments for chronic kidney disease.

Their paper "Glyphosate, Hard Water and Nephrotoxic Metals: Are They the Culprits Behind the Epidemic of Chronic Kidney Disease of Unknown Etiology in Sri Lanka?"4 was published in 2014, followed by "Simultaneous Exposure to Multiple Heavy Metals and Glyphosate May Contribute to Sri Lankan Agricultural Nephropathy,"5 and "Drinking Well Water and Occupational Exposure to Herbicides Is Associated With Chronic Kidney Disease in Padavi-Sri Pura, Sri Lanka,"6 in 2015.

In the third paper listed, the team found people who drank water from wells where glyphosate and heavy metal concentrations are higher had a fivefold increased risk of CKDu.

Award Winners Are Both Outspoken Critics of Glyphosate

Both Gunatilake and Jayasumana have previously taken a strong stance against glyphosate-based herbicides, highlighting the dangers of herbicide adjuvants. In a 2018 Daily Mirror article,7 Gunatilake noted that adjuvants added to glyphosate-based herbicides “are 1,000 times more toxic than glyphosate itself.” He went on to say:

“The point I’m trying to raise is that glyphosate without adjuvants is not very useful. Therefore, manufacturers have added these toxic chemicals into glyphosate and nobody is talking about them! Over the last 25 years, the pesticide industry had us hoodwinked by referring only to glyphosate and not to the adjuvants or additives included in these herbicides.”

Jayasumana, meanwhile, provided testimony8 at the yearlong International Monsanto Tribunal,9 which began December 2015, asserting that glyphosate use has resulted in ecocide.

In its February 4, 2019 press release,10,11 (which has since been removed from its website12), AAAS stated Gunatilake and Jayasumana “faced death threats and claims of research misconduct while working to determine the cause of a kidney disease epidemic that has claimed tens of thousands of lives in their home country of Sri Lanka and around the world. Ultimately, their advocacy led to the culprit, an herbicide called glyphosate, being banned in several affected countries.”

Jessica Wyndham, director of the AAAS Scientific Responsibility, Human Rights and Law Program, said:13

“To right a wrong when significant financial interests are at stake and the power imbalance between industry and individual is at play takes the unique combination of scientific rigor, professional persistence and acceptance of personal risk demonstrated by the two scientists recognized by this year’s award.”

Award Retracted Amid Controversy on Glyphosate’s True Danger

According to Gunatilake and Jayasumana, consumption of glyphosate-contaminated water may contribute to chronic kidney disease by facilitating the transport of heavy metals such as arsenic and cadmium into the kidneys.14

The AAAS award announcement incited a rash of criticisms by defenders of glyphosate, leading the AAAS to issue another statement just two days later, saying the organization is “taking steps to reassess the 2019 Award for Scientific Freedom and Responsibility, after concerns were voiced by scientists and members. This award will not be presented … as originally planned while we further evaluate the award selection.”

(Incidentally, AAAS CEO Rush Holt announced his retirement that same day.15) One outspoken critic was Kevin Folta — a pro-GMO University of Florida professor caught intentionally hiding his funding from Monsanto — who claimed that the pair’s 2014 paper merely "presented a hypothesis. There were no data. There were no experiments. It was a semi-well-crafted hypothesis that could be tested."16 In a commentary, GMWatch.org rebuts Folta’s claims, saying:

"Folta’s claim that there are ‘no data’ in the paper is false. There are plenty of data in this and the authors’ follow-up papers — from epidemiological and case-control studies, as well as geographical surveys — that support the idea that glyphosate herbicides should be withdrawn from use as a precautionary measure until they can be proven safe.

Are these data conclusive? No. They point to an association. It’s true that the link between glyphosate exposure and chronic kidney disease will always remain a ‘hypothesis’ until it is proven in controlled long-term animal feeding studies …

The truth is that they are unlikely to be done, due to the massive expense and the unwillingness of industry and governments to fund studies that could show that they were responsible for exposing people to poisons over many years."

Should an Award Be Revoked Based on Controversial Findings?

True, Gunatilake and Jayasumana’s theory is just one of dozens of hypotheses for what might be causing chronic CKDu.17,18,19 (Cadmium toxicity is on that list, though.) Overall, it doesn’t appear as though any one given influence can explain all, or even most, cases of CKDu, so the search for answers continues.

The problem with the AAAS’ revocation is that whether the research findings are absolutely “true” is not entirely relevant for this particular award. As tweeted by Jack Heinemann,20 a professor at the University of Canterbury in New Zealand, whose research topics include horizontal gene transfer, GMO risk assessment, conflicts of interest in research and sustainable agriculture:21

“Whether or not the link between glyphosate (or formulation) and kidney disease is right misses the point. A scientific freedom award is given for persecution. If you only give it for proven science, it would be delayed decades and it would only benefit those who persecute.”

Gunatilake and Jayasumana are relatively cautious in their own conclusions, describing the link between glyphosate and CKDu as follows:22

"A strong association between the consumption of hard water and the occurrence of this special kidney disease has been observed, but the relationship has not been explained consistently. Here, we have hypothesized the association of using glyphosate, the most widely used herbicide in the disease endemic area and its unique metal chelating properties.

The possible role played by glyphosate-metal complexes in this epidemic has not been given any serious consideration by investigators for the last two decades … Although glyphosate alone does not cause an epidemic of chronic kidney disease, it seems to have acquired the ability to destroy the renal tissues … when it forms complexes with a localized geo environmental factor (hardness) and nephrotoxic metals."

Former AAAS President Is Now Biotech Shill

While it may seem cynical to cry foul at every turn, industry influence and conflicts of interest have become so commonplace these days that it simply cannot be ignored. In a recent tweet, science journalist Paul D. Thacker23 (who also had a hand in writing the Open Payments Act, which mandates the disclosure of compensation from the pharmaceutical and medical industry) noted:24

“If you ever worried that science was being warped by corporate interests, this backpedal by AAAS in giving an award to pesticide researcher [sic] should lay that to rest. Answer seems to be ‘yes.’”

In a series of tweets, Thacker also points out links between former AAAS president Nina Fedoroff and the biotech industry, which has become well-known for pressuring medical journals and other organizations to revoke and discredit undesirable research and/or journalism.25

In 2015, Fedoroff, a plant molecular biologist, joined the OFW Law firm — which lobbies for the agrochemical industry — as senior science adviser for agriculture policy, global food security and government affairs.26

On its website in 2022, OFW plainly states that Fedoroff advises on “issues of agriculture, particularly the use of genetically modified organisms (GMO).”

To see how she now promotes herbicides for these crops, you need look no further than some of the glowing, feel-good articles she’s written about the so-called pluses of GMO crops, such as one she wrote for Genetic Literacy Project in 2020.27 It’s clear she’s fully on-board with GMO crops as well as the poisons they need to grow.

She was also present at the 2017 release of "Little Black Book of Junk Science,"28 a book by the American Council on Science and Health (ACSH), a chemical industry front group that I’ve written about on several occasions, and was a chosen speaker at a GMO Answers symposium cosponsored by Scientific American in 2016.29,30

Curiously, the “Little Black Book” is still available on different book sales sites such as Amazon, but has been removed from the ACSH website, as evidenced by the dead link for reference 27 in my sources list at the end of this article.

GMO Answers was created by the PR firm Ketchum, which works on behalf of the Council for Biotechnology Information31 to improve the public image of GMOs. U.S. Right to Know has previously called attention to a video ad in which the firm talks about how it doubled positive GMO coverage using online social media monitoring.32

AAAS Has ‘Mixed Record on Public Interest Issues’

Considering how strong professional ties can be, even when officially severed, it doesn’t seem farfetched to suspect Fedoroff’s association with AAAS and the agrochemical industry might have an influence. GM Watch also notes:33

"The AAAS has a mixed record when it comes to public interest issues. In 2013 the AAAS’ board of directors issued a statement opposing the labeling of GM foods in the U.S. … The AAAS was at the time chaired by Nina Fedoroff, who has close ties to the GMO industry.

But in an incident that showed that the AAAS is not monolithic but contains scientists who do not toe the GMO lobby’s line, a group of scientists and physicians that included many long-standing AAAS members condemned the AAAS board of directors’ statement as ‘an Orwellian argument that violates the right of consumers to make informed decisions.’

They pointed to evidence showing that Roundup, the herbicide used on most GM crops, could pose risks that consumers might reasonably want to avoid. Sadly, the AAAS board seems more likely than its membership to have the power to decide on the fate of the award that was to be given to the Sri Lankan scientists."

Latest GMO Monopoly Driven by Fear

While glyphosate-based herbicides still dominate the global market, rapidly mounting weed tolerance has led to the introduction of dicamba-based herbicides and a new crop of genetically engineered (GE) plants designed to withstand it. Dicamba is an incredibly potent toxin, and dicamba drift damaged or destroyed an estimated 3.6 million acres across the U.S.34 between 2016 and 2017 alone.

This included not only fields growing nondicamba-resistant crops but also trees. In response, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency placed some restrictions on dicamba usage. For instance, special training is required to apply the herbicide, and its application is prohibited when wind speeds are greater than 10 mph. Farmers are also asked to assess the risk that spraying could have on nearby crops, as well.

Despite this, reports of damage from dicamba drift continued through 2018. What’s worse, many farmers reported feeling they have no choice but to buy Monsanto-Bayer’s GE dicamba-tolerant seeds, or else they risk having their crop destroyed by dicamba drift from their neighbors.

Randy Brazel, a soybean grower, told NPR35 he had little choice but to switch to dicamba-tolerant soybeans after one of his neighbors called saying he was making the switch. NPR writes:

"[D]icamba fumes from fields of Xtend soybeans have curled up the leaves of sycamore trees and millions of acres of traditional soybeans across much of the Midwest and South. Brazel wasn’t willing to take the risk of that happening to his crops.

He canceled his entire order and bought the new dicamba-tolerant soybeans instead. ‘Then I have to get on the phone and call every other neighbor and say, ‘Listen, I did not want to do this. But I am going to be forced to go dicamba.’ Well, then that forces all those neighbors to call all their neighbors. And eventually what you have is a monopoly,’ he says."

In some parts of the U.S., protecting your crop from dicamba damage from neighbors is part of the sales pitch for the dicamba-resistant Xtend soybeans, NPR reports. In response to this mounting pressure to switch or lose your farm, a lawsuit has been filed against Monsanto on behalf of farmers, arguing the dicamba-tolerant seeds violate antitrust law.

As noted by NPR, “The lawsuit claims that the company understood that the risk of drifting dicamba could drive competitors out of the market.”

Bayer (which bought Monsanto in May, 2018) asked for the lawsuit to be dismissed, but in 2020, a jury not only ordered a $265 million judgment against Bayer,36 but a U.S. appeals court also blocked them from selling any more dicamba.37 Subsequently, in May 2021, Bayer set aside $300 million to cover multiple farmers’ claims and their attorneys’ fees.38

That hasn’t ended Bayer’s plans for dicamba, however, as in March 2022, a federal district court judge in Arizona ordered the EPA to file a report on its dicamba investigations by May 15, 2022, in answer to a request by the Center for Food Safety and Center for Biological Diversity to “vacate the registration of three dicamba herbicides: XtendiMax (Bayer), Engenia (BASF) and Tavium (Syngenta).”39

Substantial Amounts of Glyphosate Found in Food

The sad fact of the matter is, if you’re eating nonorganic foods, especially processed food, then you’re eating glyphosate on a regular basis. Farmers apply nearly 5 billion pounds (over 2 billion kilograms) of glyphosate to farm crops each year, worldwide.40 Approximately 300 million pounds are applied on U.S. farmland.

Testing has revealed 70% of Americans had detectable levels of glyphosate in their system in 2016; between 1993 and 2016, the glyphosate levels in people’s bodies increased by 1,208%.41 A recent investigation by journalist Carey Gillam42 revealed Roundup has been found in virtually all foods tested, including granola and crackers.

The Health Research Institute Labs (HRI Labs) has also conducted glyphosate testing, finding the chemical in Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.43 Other foods typically contaminated with glyphosate include grains, legumes, beans, orange juice and wine.

HRI’s testing also revealed people who eat oats on a regular basis have twice as much glyphosate in their system as people who don’t (likely because oats are desiccated with glyphosate before harvest). Meanwhile, people who eat organic food on a regular basis have an 80% lower level of glyphosate than those who rarely eat organic.

Glyphosate May Affect Your Health in Several Ways

Glyphosate actually has a glycine molecule as part of its structure (hence the “gly” in glyphosate). Glycine is a very common amino acid your body uses to make proteins. Laboratory investigations by research scientist Anthony Samsel found that glyphosate becomes part of animal proteins and particular the collagens which form 25% to 35% of our bodies structural proteins.

Samsel and his coauthor senior scientist at MIT, Stephanie Seneff, also believe your body can substitute glyphosate and its metabolite AMPA into peptides and proteins, which results in damaged peptides and proteins being produced.

Glycine also plays a role in quenching inflammation, and is used up in the detoxification process. As a result of glyphosate toxicity, many of us may not have enough glycine for efficient detoxification. According to research published in the journals Entropy in 2013 and in the Journal of Biological Physics and Chemistry in 2017, the main toxic effects of glyphosate are related to these facts that it:44,45,46

Inhibits human digestive enzymes leading to malabsorption with numerous health consequences. Glyphosate was found by Samsel contained with purified digestive enzymes pepsin, trypsin and lipase. Further analysis by high performance liquid chromatograph of lipase found glyphosate to chemically bond and irreversibly inhibit this enzyme.

Hormone-sensitive lipase in humans is responsible for lipid hydrolysis and cholesterol ester hydrolysis. Impaired function has been linked with atherosclerosis, obesity and type 2 diabetes among others
Inhibits the shikimate pathway, found in gut bacteria in both humans and animals
Interferes with the function of cytochrome P450 enzymes, required for activation of vitamin D in the liver, and the creation of both nitric oxide and cholesterol sulfate, the latter of which is needed for red blood cell integrity
Chelates important minerals, including iron, cobalt and manganese. Manganese deficiency, in turn, impairs mitochondrial function and can lead to glutamate toxicity in the brain
Interferes with the synthesis of aromatic amino acids and methionine, which results in shortages in critical neurotransmitters and folate
Disrupts sulfate synthesis and sulfate transport

Glyphosate also disrupts, destroys, impairs or inhibits:47

  • The microbiome, thanks to its antibiotic activity
  • Sulfur metabolism
  • Methylation pathways
  • Pituitary release of thyroid stimulating hormone, which can lead to hypothyroidism

How to Test Your Glyphosate Level

The chemical has also been linked to an increased risk of Non-Hodgkin lymphoma and lung cancer.48 Considering the possible dangers of glyphosate, it would make sense to minimize your exposure, and if you have high levels already, to take steps to detoxify it.

HRI Labs has developed home test kits for both water and urine, and if you have elevated levels, you can drive out the glyphosate by taking an inexpensive glycine supplement.

Dr. Dietrich Klinghardt of the Academy for the Healing Arts and Neural Therapy, recommends taking 1 teaspoon (4 grams) of glycine powder twice a day for a few weeks and then lowering the dose to one-fourth teaspoon (1 gram) twice a day. This forces the glyphosate out of your system, allowing it to be eliminated through your urine.

Sources and References

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Any surprise that Monsanto has been voted (I forget the exact wording), something like the world’s most hated company? As for AAAS president becoming a shill, some people know absolutely no shame at all.

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Thanks Evvy. Can you guys ever smell/taste Round-Up use in the suburbs? I checked in my Mom’s gardening shed when she died, found two Round-Up hand-sprayers, I know she thought; “just something a bit “naughty” to easily clear some weeds” (she was a multi-award winning horticulturalist), about her Round-Up use. She died (only ever having been an occasional smoker and a total non-smoker for thirty years or more), of three tumours on the lung. She grew, foraged and/or processed much of what she ate and drank, her techniques were otherwise mostly organic, she had lived a very active life in West Sussex and N.Devon part of much wonderful countryside and breathing very fresh air (for the U.K). I watched her being eaten away; “I hate this cancer” she said.

"Detoxifying Your Body from Glyphosate Exposure

There are a number of different studies that claim that glyphosate accumulates in the bones, intestine, spleen, liver, muscle and kidney.

  • avoid using Roundup and other similar products
  • avoid consumption of GMO foods which are directly contaminated with glyphosate
  • avoid animal products such as milk or meat for which GMO foods were used to feed the animals
  • eat organic foods as much as possible
  • avoid living in areas where glyphosate is applied
  • use infrared sauna for sweating out toxins
  • consume probiotic foods and probiotic supplements to repopulate the microbiota which glyphosate destroys
  • eat organic foods rich in sulfur and manganese

A study published in the December 2014 issue of the Journal of Environmental & Analytical Toxicology found that the oral application of certain natural substances were able effectively reduce urinary levels of glyphosate. 7 The researchers used a combination of the following substances:

  • fulvic acids
  • humic acids
  • activated charcoal
  • bentonite clay
  • sauerkraut juice

The study used Schleswig Holstein cows suffering from symptoms of chronic botulism. They were fed sequentially with 400 g/animal charcoal daily for 4 weeks (weeks 1-4 of the study), 200 g/ animal charcoal (weeks 5-10 of the study), 200 g charcoal and 500 ml Sauerkraut juice/animal (weeks 11-14 of the study), 120 g/animal humic acids (weeks 15-18 of the study) 200 g charcoal and 100 mL Aquahumin/animal (weeks 19- 20 the of study), or 100 g charcoal and 50 mL Aquahumin (weeks 21-22 of the study) followed by 4 weeks without any supplementation.

There was a significant reduction of glyphosate in urine following supplementation with a combination of 200g charcoal plus either 500 mL sauerkraut juice or humic acid.

They concluded that a charcoal-sauerkraut juice combination and humic acids reduced glyphosate excretion by urine and led to the improved health of animals. 8

An interesting study from October 2010 published in the Journal of Occupational Medicine and Technology investigated the mechanism of action of liver cells exposed to glyphosate and possible protection by precise medicinal plant extracts.

Glyphosate, in the form of the Monsanto product Roundup, is able to provoke intracellular disruption in hepatic (liver) cell lines at different levels, but a mixture of specific medicinal plant extracts can protect to some extent human cell lines against this toxin.

  • Taraxacum officinalis (Dandelion)
  • Arctium lappa (Burdock root)
  • Berberis vulgaris (Barberry; the active ingredient in barberry is berberine)
  • Chelidonium majus (Greater celandine)

Based on the scientific studies to-date, there are a number of natural substances that have shown positive results in detoxifying and reducing the toxic effects of glyphosate exposure.

Foods

  • Raphanus sativus (Radish)

Probiotic foods and supplements

  • Sauerkraut and sauerkraut juice

Minerals

  • Sulfur (Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM))
  • Manganese
  • Fulvic acid
  • Humic acid
  • RESTORE GUT HEALTH

Charcoal and Clay

  • Activated charcoal
  • Bentonite clay

Herbs

"Glyphosate’s primary use involves killing weeds, but it was first patented as a metal chelator (remover) because it binds to minerals (like calcium) to clear them out of pipes. That’s great for pipes, but not for people who need essential minerals to stay strong and healthy.

The herbicide also causes a devastating impact on our internal ecosystem. It kills off beneficial bacteria (probiotics) while giving dangerous pathogens a competitive edge. Research indicates that glyphosate creates and speeds up antibiotic resistance in disease-causing bacteria such as salmonella and E. coli.

In its central role, glyphosate is the most widely used agricultural pesticide in the world, but it’s often combined with other toxic herbicides including:

  • Atrazine
  • 2,4-D (2,4-Dichlorophenoxyacetic acid)
  • Dicamba
  • Neonicotinoid insecticides

That’s why the vast majority of our conventional food supply is contaminated with glyphosate, almost always along with other toxins. And as we’re finding, these dangerous combinations spell disaster for our personal and planetary health.

Glyphosate Toxicity: The Many Dangers

Glyphosate poses an enormous health risk because of our constant exposure. And though each instance of contact with glyphosate may seem small, they all add up — especially since this everyday toxin “tricks” your body into storing it, by mimicking other essential nutrients.

That puts you at higher risk for many troubling health issues, including:

Since glyphosate contamination is extremely difficult to avoid, you need to defend yourself against it every day.

Pesticides Taint Most Foods

Most plant foods sold in the U.S. come bathed in pesticides. According to the USDA, more than 225 different pesticides can be found on fruits, vegetables, and grains commonly consumed in the U.S. (See the Dirty Dozen list for more details.) Even organic foods are not always spared, since pesticides like glyphosate and others can find their way into organic farms via wind drift or other means.

Glyphosate itself contaminates hundreds of the most common foods. Even though each food may contain only trace amounts of glyphosate, those traces add up to an oversized daily dose. Here’s just a small taste of foods that contain glyphosate in popular brands:

While it may seem impossible to avoid glyphosate and other pesticides, there are things you can do to protect yourself and your family from the harm these toxins can cause. Emphasizing organic foods and products is an important first step. Even though organic produce may still contain some pesticide or toxin residues, levels will be far lower than conventionally-grown items.

There’s also a new, independent certification that manufacturers can obtain to verify products as glyphosate-free. While still in the early stages, this new certification may be something to keep an eye out for, as awareness about the dangers of glyphosate continues to climb.

Protect Yourself from Glyphosate Toxicity

There are several things you can do to minimize — and even eliminate — glyphosate contamination, but the most important is to protect your body with natural defenders. That way, as we are chronically exposed to glyphosate, our bodies can safely deal with it before long-term damage is done.

The most effective glyphosate defense team includes:

Citrus pectin: A soluble fiber known to detoxify heavy metals and clear cholesterol through its superior binding powers

Alginates (purified from kelp): Proven to protect against pesticide toxicity and effectively remove heavy metals and toxins

Glycine: An amino acid needed to create glutathione — a powerful detoxifier and antioxidant that also protects the liver against toxicity. Interestingly, the body can mistake glyphosate for glycine during protein synthesis, tricking it into storing toxic glyphosate in tissues and organs. By supplementing with extra glycine, we can prevent glyphosate from being stored, enhance glutathione activity, and help support healthy protein production.

The top glycine-rich sources include collagen and bone broth, but it’s also found in legumes, meat, dairy, poultry, eggs and fish. Even some fruits and vegetables contain glycine, like spinach, cabbage, kale, bananas and cauliflower.

Gingko biloba: An ancient herb found to be a powerful protector against glyphosate toxicity

Organic Iceland kelp: A rich source of protective minerals including iodine, which prevents the absorption of radioactive ions and toxic pesticide halogens like fluoride, bromide, and chlorine

Probiotics and prebiotics: Needed to restore beneficial gut bacteria killed off by glyphosate

In my practice, I recommend a targeted detox formula with these detox binders, to safely remove glyphosate and other agricultural toxins, prevent them from being stored in the body, and support thyroid, GI health, and other areas.

Pesticides and environmental toxins represent a daily problem that require daily solutions—especially since our levels of exposure are on the rise. Supporting your body with safe, natural detoxifiers offers the best defense against glyphosate along with other pesticides and toxins, with additional protective benefits for long-term health and wellness." https://draxe.com/health/glyphosate-toxicity/

I soak my non-organic root vegetables in a heaped desert-spoonful of baking-powder (often organic -irony-), for at least half an hour, then rinse them off before cooking, it works well (none of that; “I’ve just toxified myself” taste).

The above seem to be a good argument for my aloe vera/zeolite protocol too, quote; “an internal cleanse using aloe to hydrate, cleanse and prep. the body for the maximum efficiency of a zeolite application” https://forum.5filters.info/t/the-dimming-full-length-geoengineering-chemtrails-documentary-a-must-see-highly-scientific-investigation/3022/23