Pesticide residues vex food firms

Food companies are struggling with costly challenges launched by anti-pesticide activists.

While they are not facing mega-costs like Bayer is facing with the recent US$289 million jury judgment against Monsanto, activist lawsuits and claims are causing food companies to spend time and resources on lawyers and repackaging.

General Mills, the food and cereals colossus that makes Cheerios, just settled a lawsuit launched by Moms Across America, Beyond Pesticides and Organic Consumers Union by agreeing to drop its “100 percent natural” claim about the oats in one of its breakfast bar products.

The activist groups claimed that there were glyphosate residues in the oats, which was enough to invalidate the claim. They said they found half of one part per million in the oats tested in the Nature Valley granola bars, or one-60th of the U.S. maximum allowed.

General Mills denied the label was incorrect or that there was anything wrong with its product or its packaging.

“Nature Valley is confident in the accuracy of its label,” said spokesperson Mike Siemienas.

The agreement to change the label claim was just to avoid costly litigation, Siemienas said.

Other companies have also faced claims and lawsuits against using terms such as “natural,” often with tiny glyphosate residues as the reason.

The Organic Consumers Association has sued Ben and Jerry’s ice cream owner Unilever over glyphosate residues, and Post Foods and Quaker Oats have faced lawsuits over glyphosate residues in foods labelled “natural.”

The targeted products have generally not claimed to be organic, but the activists’ lawyers have argued that consumers believe “natural” means there will be zero residues of chemicals.

The lawsuits have not achieved much success in court, but some companies, such as General Mills, have chosen to settle cases rather than be caught in multi-year legal struggles.

The public furor over glyphosate continues to ferment with an Aug. 15 study by activist organization Environmental Working Group receiving huge play in the mainstream media, leading to millions of stories being shared on Facebook and other social media.

The group entitled its news release Breakfast With a Dose of Roundup? and led the story with, “Popular oat cereals, oatmeal, granola and snack bars come with a hefty dose of the weed-killing poison in Roundup.”

That tone extended to most of the media coverage, despite the fact that the residues were far beneath regulatory limits, being listed in the report in parts per billion.

“Report: Oatmeal, breakfast foods contain unsafe amounts of weed killer,” was the Detroit Free Press headline.

Most mainstream media reports reported the claims, referred to the recent jury award against Monsanto and mentioned the International Agency for Research on Cancer’s much-challenged claim that glyphosate is “probably carcinogenic.”

Slate magazine, the respected online news source, tore apart the Environmental Working Group’s claims with its science editor, Susan Matthews, stating that “basically the EWG threshold has to be set at one-ten-thousandth of what the (Environmental Protection Agency) has deemed to be safe for the trace amounts of glyphosate to register.”

However, that informed analysis did not make nearly the same public impact that the initial claims did, leaving food companies with a continuing headache of trying to explain pesticide residues and safety.

Major companies named in the report included Quaker, General Mill’s Nature Valley and Kellogg’s.

Bayer’s Monsanto hangover has just begun, but food companies have long grappled with pesticide residue challenges, and there’s no sign of those challenges subsiding.

About the author


  • richard

    What did they expect was going to happen? Ignoring the abuse of a patented, systemic antibiotic (Glyophsate) being applied to living seeds at harvest for twenty years………and then being “vexed” by the bio accumulation in the food stream is just lame…….If food processors are not going to take responsibility for the quality of the ingredients they use, the public will…….and they will overreact… .just like anyone who has been deceived……duhhhh!

  • grinninglibber

    Either listen to the market – or do not be surprised if the buyers go elsewhere.

    • Sheryl McCumsey

      Oh they know the buyers are going elsewhere -hence the big attack on organic. It is not live and let live it is monopolization and attempts to control the entire food industry. Bayer bought Monsanto-even conventional farmers are worried about what that means. We have lost 75% of insect life……….one has to wonder when the light bulb goes on about what this is going to do to our ability to feed ourselves. Canola does not feed the world people. Climate change is doing a number on farmers in regards to drought and more adverse weather. Organic systems are more resilient and diversity is key. Growing a whole lot of one thing has historically lead to famine. This is not just making us sick it has the potential to destroy agriculture. As glyphosate continues to be ineffective-di-camba will wipe out crops……..this is like a drug addiction and no good will come of it.

      • Pat Zagame

        Glufosinate,glyphosate,2,4-D ,dicamba resistant GE crops all containing herbicide residuals combined with Bt toxins…whats a consumer to do? The agri-chemical industry attacks organics,but they are the leading cause for sky rocketing sales…double edge sword?

      • AgSciGuy

        Think the attacks on organic foods might be a reaction to the unscientific accusations that “big organic” constantly spews at conventional farmers.

        • Sheryl McCumsey

          You make general sweeping statements with zero to back up your claims-

  • “if we educate ourselves about lack of science used to assess harm and want something better”

    That is the problem, you haven’t educated yourself as to how pesticides are regulated or assessed for harm, instead you peddle fear and expect educated people to take you seriously.

    You claim a lack of science without understanding the science that is used.

    “Bowel cancer is on the rise even though Canadians “think” they are eating better.”

    So you blame the thing you dislike, this is called a confirmation bias, yet you think saying stuff like this makes you sound clever. The reality is quite the opposite.

    • Sheryl McCumsey

      The audit on the Pest Management Regulatory Agency revealed pesticides on the market without the required science submitted. Ecojustice sued for the unlawful registration of pesticides on the market. This should never have been allowed in the first place. You can download this audit which I have done. In the recent court case in which a groundskeeper developed cancer and won his case you can download transcripts which I did. In them it reveals that Monsanto hid evidence of cancer and used ghost writers. A recent study shows how “below” acceptable limits of exposure gut issues develop. It is a fact that Canada is a world leader for IBD AND studies show that when people immigrant to Canada they then develop gut diseases especially in the very young. We have higher levels of this in Canadian food than most countries. Hundreds of studies illustrate harm with this pesticide HOWEVER it is a serious flaw in our system that industry provides the science used AND that the actual product used (round-up with its additives) is not what is actually assessed-only the active ingredient. How is that for LACK of science? I have letters from government to prove these facts. So we have the science that clearly illustrates a variety of concerns, we have evidence this is in our food, water and bodies, we have evidence that many chronic diseases associated with them are on the rise. AS well I have asked for the reports of abuses of pesticides and in our province I see hundreds of complaints that are not followed up on, I have photos of people abusing pesticides, I have the evidence given to me from people all over the country. Just like the tobacco industry who claims tobacco is “safe” – the pesticide industry does exactly the same thing. People do take me very seriously because I take that evidence with me when I discuss my concerns. This is irresponsible and Canadians should be outraged.

      • “A recent study shows how “below” acceptable limits of exposure gut issues develop.”

        Are you talking about the Ramazzini Institute studies? If you are then you may want to read them since this is not what they found.

        There is no evidence of roundup/glyphosate posing a cancer risk, the court case does not change this.

        “studies show that when people immigrant to Canada they then develop gut diseases”

        The suspected reasons for this are low vitamin D levels from low light exposure, overly hygienic environments and food additives. Again, your confirmation bias is limiting your ability to properly analyse these issues.

        “Hundreds of studies illustrate harm with this pesticide ”

        This is wrong.

        “industry provides the science used”

        Not all the science used, but if industry didn’t provide the “science” then who would? you?

        “actual product used (round-up with its additives) is not what is actually assessed-only the active ingredient”

        The research I do uses the actual product, I would like to see your information source saying only the active ingredient need to be assessed. No doubt, there would be times that individual ingredients need to be tested in isolation, but I doubt you have evidence to suggest that formulated products are never assessed.

        “we have the science that clearly illustrates a variety of concerns”

        No you don’t, but if you do please post the citations.

        “we have evidence that many chronic diseases associated with them are on the rise”

        Again, this is your confirmation bias talking, there is no evidence linking glyphosate with chronic disease.

        “I have photos of people abusing pesticides”

        Please elaborate on this, what abuse are you talking about?

    • Peter Olins

      The incidence of colorectal cancer in Canada is decreasing, possibly due to increased screening and removal of (precancerous) polyps.

      • Sheryl McCumsey

        You just contradicted yourself. You mean “deaths” are decreasing possibly due to increased screening and removal of polyps. The actually incidence of disease is increasing.

        • Peter Olins

          “Incidence” refers to the point at which a disease is diagnosed, and it’s my understanding that early removal of polyps reduces the chance of actually developing colorectal cancer.

          At least in the US, the incidence of new cases (and deaths) have been declining steadily since around 2000.

          Unfortunately, we don’t know enough about how the disease develops, let alone how to prevent it. However, alcohol and obesity appear to be modifiable risk factors.

          • Sheryl McCumsey

            Glyphosate is found to be an endocrine dysruptor which will impact obesity rates-this is something that is not a requirement for registration of a pesticide for assessment and it is one of the many serious concerns. If we allow endocrine dysruptors into the food system these so called risk factors are not being controlled. It certainly can explain in part why 1/4 of the population is obese.
            Livestock producers deliberately give animals low dose antibiotics to enhance growth. Glyphosate is also registered on the patent as an anti-microbial-so this is yet another reason it might affect obesity just for starters. However as I have said before-studies show this negatively impacts the gut at below acceptable limits AND the increase of IBD is most pronounced in the young-who hopefully are not yet drinking alcohol not to mention young children who are new to Canada who develop this after arriving here. Something is definitely different in our food system and glyphosate has evidence that clearly points a finger in its direction. Unless your data is up to date this will not truly reflect what is going on. My data is up to date. All resources state that deaths have declined due to early interception-I would think preventing cancer is a good idea not just treating it.

          • Peter Olins

            “Glyphosate is found to be an endocrine dysruptor [sic]…”

            There you go again, with yet another new topic, and no evidence to support this dramatic claim.

            “…studies show this negatively impacts the gut at below acceptable limits..”

            1. Provide a link for one study.
            2. Offer a brief comment.
            3. Wait for a response.
            4. Rinse, and repeat.

          • Damo

            ” My data is up to date”

            Once again, what data, what studies?

          • AgSciGuy

            Why don’t you answer Peter’s question? I know, it is easier to throw out an endless string of unsubstantiated claims.

      • Sheryl McCumsey

        If Western Producer will not post my answer the editor needs to think why information such as this is suppressed. Mr. Olins’s statement makes little sense. How does cancer “decrease” due to increased screening? It hasn’t-screening has increased the rapid diagnosis which improves mortality-nevertheless this is now the second most common form of cancer death for men and third for women. The incidence has gone up-the mortality has gone down.

        • Damo

          So, you admit that increased diagnosis is the reason for increased cancer rates.

          Thanks for that.

          Otherwise, though you did not address Peter Olins comments.

      • Thanks for the correction Peter, I didn’t fact check what Sheryl had said, I will next time.

  • Damo

    “Bowel cancer is on the rise even though Canadians “think” they are eating better”

    What is it that they think they are eating more so that they are eating better?

    • Sheryl McCumsey

      Studies show that they are eating what is considered “healthy” – the reason I say “think” is because many of us are unaware of how contaminated our food has become.

      • Damo

        And how contaminated has it become?

        Bowel cancer is related to meat consumption. Not many people are downing their steaks with RoundUp.

        • Sheryl McCumsey

          Animals are exposed to this too-however that is exactly the point-although people are eating more fruits and vegetables they are getting sicker. It is kind of a dumb thing to say people are “drowning” their steaks with round-up. The fat in an animal is where toxins reside. New evidence is showing that this is also impacting livestock. The federal government found glyphosate exceeded acceptable limits in Canadian food. We have increased pesticide use by 70% in 8 years.

          • Damo

            “although people are eating more fruits and vegetables they are getting sicker.”

            Citation needed for that one. That is totally bogus.

            ” It is kind of a dumb thing to say people are “drowning” their steaks with round-up” Agreed. Which is why I didn’t say that.

            ” The fat in an animal is where toxins reside.” Any proof that these pesticides are found in animal fat.

            “New evidence is showing that this is also impacting livestock.” What evidence?

          • Sheryl McCumsey

            I see you have now edited your question-however I do have a life and do not want to write a book on-line if you don’t mind. You can search for this information for yourself-google Canada eating habits changed perhaps-google cancer/infertility/kidney disease/liver disease/parkinson’s for Canadian stats (all increasing and all linked to pesticide exposure), why make a stupid comment then and look up toxins in animal fat, animal studies showing harm glyphosate and case studies…………it is clear you are just argumentative in your responses and I have other things to do today. I already gave you a BIG one-gut diseases did you forget?

          • Damo

            That is not true. I did not edit my post. You are now lying about me.

            Also, I actually do have a life, so excuse me if I don’t want to spend too much time investigating your lies. Searches for the information you claim came up empty, so I am not going to spend anymore time on it. If what you are saying is the the truth you will provide a source. If you don’t provide a source it is obviously a lie.

            What was your “BIG one-gut disease?” Whatever that even means.

          • AgSciGuy

            Fake science. Glyphosate is not fat soluble and is excreted rapidly from the body.

          • Goldfinger


            Monsanto studies show that 30 to 35 % of glyphosate is well retained, the beta half-life of which is 7 to 14 days. That means glyphosate can circulate in your biology for about a month. Of the 30-35% approximately better than 1% bioaccumulates in all tissues highest in the bone and bone marrow. Monsanto found glyphosate caused statistically significant achromatic lesions in bone marrow over the experiments solvent controls …. The balance of the glyphosate is passed in the excreta i.e feces and urine. Some glyphosate does metabolize, 6 metabolites were found as well as 4 additional new synthetic amino acids which can also metabolize. Carcinogenic N-Nitrosoglyphosate was found to increase over glyphosate fed residues, as were others. Bottom line is that the retained glyphosate is also responsible for the destruction of the cells of glands, organs and tissues. Destroy the cells of the glands and organs and it directly affects functionality and this leads to numerous diseases

            The scientific journal Entropy, it was stated: “Contrary to the current widely-held misconception that glyphosate is relatively harmless to humans, the available evidence shows that glyphosate may rather be the most important factor in the development of multiple chronic diseases and conditions that have become prevalent in Westernized societies.

          • AgSciGuy

            Entropy is a pay-to-play journal. Almost all the references in the article are from Samsel, Seneff, and Kim. All who have been thoroughly discredited. …

          • Byron Smith

            Are you saying that there is something wrong with the Monsanto study data that found these facts? If so please tell us, specifically, what the issues are.

          • AgSciGuy

            Post a link to the study and I will review it. I don’t want to have to waste time searching for that trash paper again. But, the researchers referenced in the article are known for drawing unsupported populist conclusions to gain fame and publicity, especially among people uneducated in science.

            All the studies are reviewed by EPA and FDA. Guess they’re in Monsanto’s back pocket!! Conspiracies are great. Oh yeah, the lunar landing was fake, a PR stunt.

          • Goldfinger

            The data was from Monsanto’s own studies. Let’s discuss the data and the analysis and avoid the gossip about your opinions of the journal or the scientists. Let’s examine the facts and forget the spin.

          • AgSciGuy

            Please provide the compete citation. It will probably make interesting reading – like a good Stephen King horror novel.

        • Byron Smith

          Not all bowel cancer is related to red meat consumption. There are other issues that contribute. It is not as simple as you would like to trivialize it to be.

          • Damo

            Really? You are telling me that things aren’t as simple as I “trivialize them to be.”

          • Byron Smith


      • Damo

        What studies?

        • Sheryl McCumsey

          There are hundreds of studies-what exactly are you referring to?

          • Damo

            You said studies. What studies are you talking about?

    • S.G.

      Such nonsense. You must have your head in the sand.

  • Peter Olins

    Which Canadian “gut disease issues” are you referring to, and where can we see the statistics?

    • Sheryl McCumsey

      Go to the Canadian Digestive Health Foundation web-page for starters-we have gone from 10-20 million Canadians “diagnosed” with a gut disease in 10 years. That includes IBD, Crohn’s and celiac. Your can get stats for every province-the incidence has been reported in many news media since it is a concern seeing this in younger children.

      • Damo

        Has it occurred to you there may be other reasons for an increase in diagnosis? Including more people getting tested?

        • Sheryl McCumsey

          10 Million MORE in 10 years? Studies also show that people who move here from other countries “develop” gut diseases they did not have before. I already mentioned a study which showed gut issues with below acceptable limits of exposure. The science, the evidence and the exposure are all there. People who work in these fields have said many times this is related to environmental exposures. You have to try very very hard to ignore it.

          • Damo

            What studies?

            “Studies also show that people who move here from other countries “develop” gut diseases they did not have before. ”

            That could be due to them a. living older (age correlates with disease a lot of times), b. actually being diagnosed (you don’t say where these people are from), or c. some other diet related thing (like increased meat consumption).

            “People who work in these fields have said many times this is related to environmental exposures. You have to try very very hard to ignore it.”

            What people? I don’t believe every shiester that works in auto repair either. I make sure they are not trying to profit off me before paying any attention. It would do you well to do the same regarding possible toxins in your food.

          • Sheryl McCumsey

            These studies focused on the children not the older relatives. This is in Canada-this story and segment is about Canada. Studies focus on one issue-there are other studies that support this as harming the gut. Doctors could be “shiesters” but I fail to see why they would say this unless it is true……there are several sources but it is clear that you believe what you want to believe. Do you smoke?

          • Damo

            What study? Answer the question.

      • Peter Olins

        I think it’s a mistake to lump all gastrointestinal conditions together, so I’m not sure your number is useful.

        Canada has a very high prevalence of IBD (Crohn’s, Ulcerative Colitis) relative to other countries, but the reason for increased incidence over the past two decades is unknown.

        Prevalence of celiac disease is hard to determine, since the majority of cases go undiagnosed. However, if I recall correctly, the prevalence reached a plateau a couple of decades ago. The causes are still poorly understood.

        If you have any ideas about the cause of a specific gastrointestinal disease, I’d be glad to discuss further, but I’m not sure why you are bringing this up in the context of an article about pesticides.

        • Sheryl McCumsey

          One of the causes cited in many references for IBD is exposure to anti-biotics. Glyphosate happens to be registered on the patent as such as well recent study indicates this is exactly what it does. Glyphosate is the pesticide mentioned in this article and how it is found in our food. NOT sure why you missed that. This herbicide is also used to dry down cereal crops-it is interesting that there are at least three studies to show severely altered normal flora in celiac patients. Some brewers have found this to be a problem in that this interferes with the fermentation process. To dismiss this evidence is to dismiss science that does not suit the agenda to market a harmful pesticide that is becoming less useful to farmers due to weed resistance.

          • Peter Olins

            Sheryl, you need to stop throwing out this stream of claims without substantiating them. Are you truly interested in learning about this topic? If so, pick a topic and show the evidence, so that we can discuss. These are important issues, but you are not helping anyone with your wild claims.

            I know of no evidence to suggest that traces of dietary glyphosate affect human gut flora. Where are you getting these extreme notions?

            Regarding celiac disease, why wouldn’t you expect the gut flora to be different, given that the disease reduces the absorption of many nutrients; plus the diet of a typical (diagnosed) celiac is quite different from the general public.

          • Sheryl McCumsey

            LOL-sorry Peter-but I have been stating where this information comes from-does it bother you?-I can’t help you if you do not want to look. Studies, reports and evidence are not wild claims. There is no way of knowing exactly why the gut flora of someone with celiac is so severely altered-however many claim they can eat wheat in places where glyphosate is not used as a desiccant. It needs more study to illustrate why someone suddenly develops this sensitivity.

          • Peter Olins

            Au contraire, Sheryl!

            Celiac disease is characterized by shrinking gut villi, resulting in malabsorption of nutrients (and fatty stools). I find it hard to imagine that unabsorbed nutrients would not result in the proliferation of a subset of gut microbes.

            If you have evidence (or rationale) for how minute traces of glyphosate would result in the microbial changes seen in celiac patients, and that this change is the CAUSE of the disease please share.

            Your claim about celiac patients being able to eat wheat from certain sources is almost impossible to believe—if true, it could be a breakthrough in this major disease. Please share this information here (or contact me privately).

            Or perhaps your claims are bogus, in which case you are using the plight of real patients to advance a destructive agenda.

          • Sheryl McCumsey

            Peter you are talking about the symptoms of disease which is not the same thing as the cause.

          • AgSciGuy

            Funny, can’t find anything about a link between glyphosate and celiac disease at,,, . . . …

          • AgSciGuy

            Where do you come up with this garbage? The Environmental Working Group? Try to actually rely on science.

            Glyphosate is an h-e-r-b-I-c-I-d-e. This means it controls plants! It doesn’t even control all plants. It certainly isn’t an antibiotic that controls all microorganisms. If glyphosate is really an antibiotic, don’t you think the evil chemical companies would be marketing it as such? (Sorry, that would be logical).
            The ethanol in your organic wine is a real antibiotic. It is used to sterilize and disinfect items in many processes.

            If you are that paranoid, I hope you don’t use disinfecting cleaners such as Ajax, Mr. Clean, etc. They are a much broader spectrum killer than glyphosate. (BTW, these products are FDA and EPA registered pesticides.)

            Don’t forget your dish soap, laundry, etc. They’re probably toxic too – see Environmentalist-wacko Working Group cleaning guide.

          • Sheryl McCumsey

            Glyphosate is a pesticide which all herbicides are. … The patent illustrates how this is a broad spectrum anti-microbial.

  • Jason

    Actually, Bowel cancer is on the decline in the US and Canada. Is it possible you don’t know what you’re talking about?

    • Sheryl McCumsey

      AS of 2017-actually the rates are increasing “specifically” in the younger population according to the Canadian Cancer society statistics, “Colorectal cancer is the second most common cancer, accounting for 13% of all cancers. Starting from the
      mid-1980s, overall incidence rates for colorectal cancer declined for both sexes until the mid-1990s, though this decline was more prominent for females.(9)
      Incidence rates then rose, only to decrease again, beginning in 2000 for females and 2008 for males (Table 1.5). This is most likely due to increased use of
      colorectal cancer screening, which can identify treatable precancerous polyps and reduce cancer incidence. The decline in colorectal cancer incidence rates appears confined to older adults as rates are increasing among adults younger than 50 years of age in Canada and in the United States.” As professionals in the field have remarked it is sad to see gut diseases increasing in children as young as 5. “Carroll, Alberta lead on the study published in the American Journal of Gastroenterology, explained that a decade of data suggests the rate of illness is rising. This is especially true for young children — between 1999 and 2010, there was a 7.2 per cent increase per year in children under five who were diagnosed. ” Note that studies show glyphosate will cause these issues in below acceptable limits of exposure. It is registered on the patent as an anti-microbial that lists gut flora it destroys. Pathogenic bacteria are found to be more resistant in studies.

      • Jason

        So, faced with the fact that colo-rectal cancers are not increasing, you move the goalposts to focus on a narrower age range and some set of mystery “gut disease”?

        Unless you have a plausible explanation as to why the older population (who’s been exposed to glyphosate far longer) would be less effected, then please… don’t waste our time.

        • Denise

          How old is older? Children and babies have not developed strong immune systems,yet, and are more vulnerable to diseases .

          • Jason

            As the previous poster said…people below 50. Not exactly young enough fo underdeveloped immune systems.

        • Sheryl McCumsey

          Read the post-that is not correct. “The decline in colorectal cancer incidence rates appears confined to older adults as rates are increasing among adults younger than 50 years of age in Canada and in the United States.” It is entirely up to you how you use your time lol.

          • Jason

            No, dear. It is correct. You were wrong so you cherry picked the evidence to find a subset of the data that fits your narrative. In fact it’s not all of the adults younger than 50. It’s really people 40-50. So, please explain….how would glyphosate be causing cancer in them, but nobody else?

      • AgSciGuy

        The glyphosate dose needed to achieve anti-microbial activity is unrealistically high to be obtained from treated crops. see Again, the ethanol in your organic beer is a much more toxic than glyphosate and the exposure is orders of magnitude grater.

        • obfuscate99

          There was a study from last year that quite elegantly measured this. Nielsen et al., (2017). Glyphosate has limited short-term effects on commensal bacterial
          community composition in the gut environment due to sufficient aromatic
          amino acid levels. DOI: 10.1016/j.envpol.2017.10.016

          • richard

            Meanwhile over here on planet earth, intelligent humans have concluded that human progress in the twenty first century will be defined by zero agritoxins in their food….. not by how much we can get away with as is the case on the planet of the apes.

          • AgSciGuy

            Thanks for citing that study. It supports the fact that glyphosate is safe when used as labeled. Some quick points from the earth-shattering study you cite:
            -most studies were in vitro – a good starting point but not decisive .
            -“we found that glyphosate . . . at up to 50x the established European Acceptable Daily Intake had very limited effects on bacterial community composition in Sprague Dawley rats . . .” Note: 50x rate.
            – “We conclude that sufficient intestinal levels of aromatic amino acids provided by the diet alleviate the need for bacterial synthesis of aromatic amino acids and thus prevents an antimicrobial effect of glyphosate in vivo.”
            -“We found no differences between treatment groups in in fecal consistency”
            -“We did not observer abnormalities in organs from the rats dosed with glyphosate.” Even at 50x rate.
            -Your pen-name is very appropriate: obfuscate = to make something less clear and harder to understand

  • Denise

    What do you think the consensus would have been, many years ago, if there would have been a referendum asking the public if they approve or not of the practice of desiccating crops with Roundup to kill the crop, dry it out, and make it more uniform and easier for combining?
    Personally, I was shocked and alarmed when I found out that farmers had started doing this, some thirty years ago, without the consumers’ knowledge.

  • Jason

    No. It is not possible. But thank you for your rather misplaced concern.

    • richard

      Your welcome…. and now you understand why glyphosate is going down hard and fast in spite of all the weak subterfuge…..kinda like we predicted here five years ago.

      • Farmer_Guy

        Pray tell how glyphosate is “going down hard”

        • richard

          When the public resents everything the addict and its dealer has to say about the most abused chemical in the history of humanity….. its finished..

          • AgSciGuy

            … Please give scientific information used to determine this is the “most abused chemical in history”. Sounds like an unsupported claim to me.

            Glyphosate does not appear to be “finished”. It seems to be holding steady at a high level of use: Trends in glyphosate herbicide use in the US and globally (

  • AgSciGuy

    Often disrespect is not intended, but those of us with a strong science background get very irritated with the lack of science presented by organic groups.

    Speaking of lack of respect, the unsubstantiated claims the conventional food is dangerous is extremely disrespectful. The vast majority of pesticides in your food are natural – produced by the plants themselves. . . . . Unfortunately, that destroys the “victim” status of activists.

    • Denise

      Only trouble is that boiler pipe cleaner (glyphosate) was never meant to be used on our food supply and released into the natural environment.
      WE use bleach to kill germs in our bathroom but we would never think of drinking it to kill germs in our body.
      I guess you could say in small amounts, over time, it won’t kill you, but I’d rather not take that chance.
      I respect my body, feed it nutritous and pesticide- free food and it rewards me with good health. It is challenging at times because the labeling is often misleading.
      For example: With Non-GMO labeled products they forget to add that the Non-GMO crops can still have residues of glyphosate because they desiccate the crops with Roundup/glyphosate, more often than not.
      Glyphosate chelates micro-nutrients in the soil, including copper, iron, magnesium,manganese,nickel, colbalt and zinc.
      GMO glyphosate tolerant plants are deficient of many necessary minerals that our bodies require for good health.

      • AgSciGuy

        If glyphosate is so dangerous, shouldn’t farmers show the greatest injury? I haven’t seen those studies!! Where are they? Glyphosate chelates certain micronutrients in the soil. You make a giant jump to claim that happens in plants. Which study did you read???

        If you use any bleach, you are likely exposed to much more of its residue than you will ever be exposed to glyphosate. And guess what, glyphosate is about the same toxicity (LD50) as bleach.

        • Denise

          Saying “glyphosate is about the same toxicity (LD50) as bleach” does not reflect well on glyphosate’s reputation. We don’t go around spraying bleach in our environment for very good reasons. Yet glyphosate is spread around and is increasing in strength and use in higher amounts to try to combat Roundup- resistant superweeds.
          The use of glyphosate is “out of control” and is being used in ways it was never intended to be used for, when it first hit the market.
          Good for sales and profits though! You won’t find an agrochemical company questioning the safety of increased use. Profits are more important than people’s lives and the environment. We all know that.
          Where’s the scientific studies that prove the increased use of glyphosate is safe? Where’s the scientific proof that more residues of glyphosate in our food are not damaging the development of children even more than already?

    • Sheryl McCumsey

      Hundreds of studies illustrate harm with this pesticide. All of those studies are done by scientists. The disrespect comes from the inability to consider anything that does not fit into the agenda of selling this pesticide-

      • More unsubstantiated claims, Sheryl if you have hundreds of studies that show harm then it should not be hard for you to post one of them. Throwing out a bunch of claims with no evidence is not what a scientifically literate person would do.

        Sheryl, are you able to post a study that supports any of your claims?

        • Sheryl McCumsey

          What you don’t think scientists perform studies? You want a study on that lol? I am not going to post hundreds of studies. If you can’t even ask a specific question don’t expect an answer. Can you post a study that proves round-up is safe?

          • So you aren’t going to post even one study showing harm from glyphosate? Why would anyone take you seriously if you won’t provide the evidence to your claims?

            “Can you post a study that proves round-up is safe?”

            That’s not how science works, given your claims of being scientifically literate I assumed you knew of the difficulties in proving a negative, I guess you are not the scientist you think you are. Furthermore, I am not the one making claims without evidence.

            So just post a study that supports your claims so we can discuss it.

          • Sheryl McCumsey

            Mr. “Effnnell”… You do not know me but to harp on how scientifically literate I am is stupid. A chemical company is required to submit studies to illustrate that their product has an “acceptable” risk. The onus is not on me but on them. They lost in a recent lawsuit because they have been hiding evidence that this pesticide is linked to cancer. I have more important things to do in my life than to respond to [you]… I am not interested in discussing anything with you.

          • I don’t need to know you Sheryl, all the information I need is here in this forum, you have been asked multiple times for evidence to support your claims yet you refuse to provide that evidence. My guess is its because you don’t have any evidence. Maybe its time to change your thinking Sheryl.

          • obfuscate99

            First, the courts do not determine the validity of scientific results.

            Second, given the fact that the plaintiff’s attorney elected to exclude jurors with formal education in science or medicine, it was obvious from the start that their strategy was to make an emotional appeal to jury. It worked, as is the case in a disproportionately large number of civil cases involving personal injury.

            What is also true is that the appellate court is a very different story. No juries, just a panel of three judges (or the full complement of judges if they progress to an en banc).

            Now, about being able to show the toxicity data indicating the NOAEL and or LOAEL. Have you even bothered to look into the testing for glyphosate?

            I ask because it has been studied, repeatedly I might add. Want to see a partial list?

            How about just a sampling of the tests NOT conducted by Monsanto beginning with OECD-453 compliant studies in rats:

            – Feinchemie Schwebda, 1996: Klimisch Rating 1
            – Arysta Life Sciences, 1997: Klimisch Rating 1
            – Syngenta, 2001: Klimisch Rating 1
            – Nufarm, 2009: Klimisch Rating 1

            and mice:

            – Cheminova 1993: Klimisch Rating 1
            – Arysta Life Sciences 1997 (18 Month): Klimisch Rating 1
            – Feinchemie Schwebda 2001 (18 Month): Klimisch Rating 1

            In each and every case, these studies showed that there are no adverse health effects anywhere near the ADI.

            Care to guess how many OECD- 453 compliant studies have been conducted by the anti-GMO research groups?





            Only Seralini had the gall to try and pass of his retracted 2012 study as being compliant with the OECD methods, but a simple comparison of the 453 design and the materials and methods he used shows that this was not the case. Paragraph 19 expressly states that his use of only 10 rats per gender per treatment was insufficient, as it required the support of the results from the carcinogenicity phase of the study to provide a sufficient power of analysis to distinguish treatment effects from background variation (and even then, his use of Sprague-Dawley rats for a two year study on its own requires the population sizes to be much higher, in accordance with Guidance Document 116, and also the 2011 revision of the EFSA standards).

            Hey, I may as well toss in the Monsanto ones, right?

            – Monsanto, 1990: Klimisch Rating 1
            – Monsanto 1981 (Predates OECD 451 or 453): Klimisch Rating 3
            – Monsanto 1983 (Predated OECD451 and 453): Klimisch Rating 2

            Care to guess one other thing that these studies have managed to do that not a single one of the anti-GMO research groups have managed to do in over 2 decades?

            These studies are reproducible, and continue to align with each other in a way that none of the dire papers from the anti-GMO Luddites have never once managed to achieve.

            Heck the EU wrapped up not one, but three studies to see if there was any veracity to Seralini’s work (GRACE, G-TwYST, and GMO90Plus).

            …take a wild guess what the results were?

            Oh, and you should note that those OECD-453 studies I listed, they weren’t all in the US. Research groups from North America, Europe, and Asia were able to follow a basic study design…kinda odd how your side keeps on screwing up by the numbers.

          • Damo

            Really, what evidence was that?

            You claim you don’t have time to respond, but then you do just that–but not to answer questions or even provide the studies you keep claiming to have, but to deflect.

          • Damo

            So, you can’t produce even one of those studies?

      • Damo

        Are these the same studies that show that people are eating more fruits and vegetables and getting more sick?

  • richard

    Thirteen weed species on sixty million acres resistant to glyphosate (USDA 2015) ….and growing every minute of every hour of every day…. two and a half litres per acre to do the same fall burnoff it took a half litre and acre twenty years ago (my neighbour)… I say its finished… good luck with that hot mess pal… your welcome!

    • Jason

      Maybe it is finished? Seems unlikely given that all the other herbicide options already have far more resistant weed species than that. But who cares? And what’s that got to do with whether or not bowel cancers are on the rise because of it? What was that you were saying about changing the subject?

      • richard

        Bowel cancers are your obsession not mine…. your subterfuge for the fact that your favorite drug is obsolete….. Thanx for the admission though… takes a real man to admit he’s finally facing reality….. Sadly all the little ancillary GM/glyphosate crops are riding the disorient express to absurdistan as well…. Curious how producers still believe they are at the throttle…..Comical if it weren’t so pathetic…..

        • Jason

          No. On the contrary, bowel cancers were the topic of the conversation…. at least until you butted in to change the topic why simultaneously accusing me of changing the topic.

          You seem to have a strange obsession with glyphosate. Why is that?

          • richard

            No, on the contrary the topic of the article was food processors vexation with glyphosate residues….. Bowel cancer is your obsession. Glyphosate is finished for so many reasons and I am only here to remind the willfully ignorant why this is so…..Your welcome!

    • AgSciGuy

      If resistance is growing that fast, there would be many more resistant species than there are. Actually there are 42 resistant species. See: . Even though there are resistant weed species, glyphosate still has a great deal of utility, which is why it continues to be used.

      BTW, if it is true resistance, increasing the rate 5x would nt make a difference. You are obviously commenting on a topic you do not understand very well. This site isn’t too bad: –> glyphosate resistance. (Unfortunately, it is not a coloring book.)
      There is also a grate deal of antibiotic resistance. Gues we better eliminate all antibiotics!!

      • richard

        … My neighbors occupy some of the best land in Canada and they are not stupid. That they use and abuse glyphosate three to five times a season is a function of the fact that there is some residual effectiveness to their efforts in spite of declining results….they all admit this…. The fact that some egghead enabler comes on here proclaiming the wonders of glyphosate and antibiotic abuse is a function of how terminally disconnected from grassroots reality are the so called experts…. trapped in their cubicles and their agribiz coloring books….. Furthermore it doesn’t matter a lick what you or I think…. the public has clearly concluded that your addiction to glyphosate and its concomitant GM mythologies is an utter fraud…. and that you and your ilk need to be outed….. The world is not starving for food…. it is bloated on forty years of theology dressed up as “science” Talk about your karma running over your dogma.

  • AgSciGuy

    Science is at a disadvantage!! It is fast and easy to lob unsubstantiated claims and accusations, and maybe throw in a few quasi-technical term like the anti-science fear-mongers. It takes much more time and effort to respond using real science and facts.

    • Sheryl McCumsey

      Yes-science is besieged by corporate interests. 19 of the 20 studies done at our university are sponsored by Dow and Bayer. They will ensure that those studies they fund are in their self interest. Universities should be publicaly funded and corporate subsidies discontinued. In the past laboratory workers faced criminal charges around bad laboratory practices and went to jail. Where are the watch dogs now? There is no transparency to the science used since it is considered “proprietary.” The only argument is a smear campaign which tobacco did for decades-it is the same tactics used with chemical corporations. You sir are a hypocrite for doing exactly what you claim those who have valid concerns about the system of assessing harm, the system of tracking compliance, the system to assess the need for any pesticide, the system to track harm to the environment and human health. You also do not have the integrity to reveal your name and identity. WHO are you?

      • AgSciGuy

        Science is also besieged by science-ignorant activist.

        • richard

          yeah….and it is also besieged by reality ignorant technical activists…. you know the savants who believe a degree in science is the equivalent of enlightenment…..???

      • AgSciGuy

        There is also a tendency for some researchers to do poor research and publish false claims about pesticides to gain fame such as Mona Thiruchelvam who fabricated data to claimed atrazine caused Parkinson’s disease. She also injected paraquat directly into the fetal brain tissue of mice resulting in Parkinson’s-like symptoms – that unrealistic exposure can only be viewed as fraud.

        Also, I don’t give my name because I am a scientist by day but am greatly frustrated by all the ignorance spread by uneducated people. So, I try to challenge ignorance with science. In addition to wanting to remain professional, I also fear the potential violence from wacky environmentalist zealots.

  • AgSciGuy

    The real disrespect are the unscientific accusations that farmers and modern agriculture are poisoning people. Or, that farmers are poisoning people because evil ag-chem companies have duped them to using unnecessary products they because they are sooo stupid.

  • Sheryl McCumsey

    Correlation is how we decide to do a study-and a study has been done.

  • Verna Lang

    Perhaps the consumer can be wrong. That is reflected in responses to poll questions like: Do you want to see DNA in food labelled? About 80% of consumers in the US and Canada said yes to that question, revealing that they apparently do not know that DNA is part of all of all the animals and plants we eat. So why should the opinions of uninformed or misinformed consumers be given precidence over the global scientific consensus of glyphosate and GMO safety?


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