Asked June 11, 2019, 3:22 PM EDT

Are you still claiming that glyphosate is harmless enough to have it in our food and soil? I wrote you concerning the USDA's approval of commercial organic compost mixed with conventional materials grown with glyphosate. I only found this out after handling a lot of organic compost, and my medical test showed a high level of glyphosate. Would you feel safe handling organic compost, laced with glyphosate? Would you allow your children and pets to play in glyphosate-contaminated soil? Thank you.

Monterey County California

4 Responses

Thank you for your question. As your prior question illustrates, the science, regulation and safety of this chemical are undergoing enormous scrutiny and debate, at local, state, federal and international levels. Universities may be involved in some research, but largely devoted to its ability to control ‘weeds,’ and to alternatives. We do not regulate pesticide safety to humans in an area so thoroughly controlled by federal (EPA) rules, and state (California Prop 65j work. So, since your state is at the forefront (in the US) of investigating this, I suggest you read the resources in this article: You can also consult with your county Extension office, but I suspect they, too, will send you there. Good luck!

Hi Kristena, I am so relieved to see this! Thank you kindly!

Thank you for the information and link, Kristena. Rather than pesticide regulation, I question why, with so much information available to show glyphosate as carcinoginic, universities are not studying the effects. I think I found the answer. Three years ago, one intrepid student discovered Cornell University's deep ties with the biotech industry. He rose up in arms when he discovered that, with the help of the university, Monsanto lobbied for, and secured, protection against research on glyphosate and GMO seeds. “Technology/stewardship agreements required for the purchase of genetically modified seed explicitly prohibit research. These agreements inhibit public scientists from pursuing their mandated role on behalf of the public good unless the research is approved by industry. As a result of restricted access, no truly independent research can be legally conducted on many critical questions regarding the technology, its performance, its management implications, IRM [insect resistance management], and its interactions with insect biology. Consequently, data flowing to an EPA Scientific Advisory Panel from the public sector is unduly limited.” (Source: Landes Bioscience, Volume 1, Issue 2, March/April 2010). That was nearly ten years ago. Meanwhile, GMO cultivation and glyphosate, which are prohibited in many countries, are now contaminating our organic crops, livestock feed, and other products.
I find this very disturbing, and wish to generate more interest from university's whose ethics are not for sale. Thank you!

You’re welcome. Good luck in your efforts!