CropLife America applauds EPA's glyphosate findings

In a memorandum released in June, the Environmental Protection Agency’s Endocrine Disruptor Screening Program (EDSP) found that the herbicide glyphosate, found in Roundup, posed no risk to the human endocrine system.

Glyphosate was developed to target broadleaf annual weeds that compete with commercial crops. It is also commonly used by home gardeners and in industrial areas or along railway lines as a form of weed control.

“The EPA’s rigorous testing and science-based regulations ensure that growers have access to increasingly precise crop protection products, including glyphosate-based herbicides,” said Janet E. Collins, senior vice president of Science and Regulatory Affairs for CropLife America.

Roundup is the most popular herbicide in the world, and as its active ingredient, glyphosate has undergone extensive testing by regulatory agencies. It was the widespread use of Roundup that triggered the EDSP’s analysis of the compound rather than any perceived danger pose by glyphosate. Additionally, glyphosate recently passed its routine 10-year evaluation by the European Union.

“When used according to label directions, glyphosate is a safe and effective product for pest control. The compound specifically inhibits an enzyme that is essential to plant growth that is not found in humans or other animals, contributing to the low risk to human health,” said Collins.

Collins added that for consumers eating healthy means eating fruits and vegetables. She cited a statement from the American Cancer Society saying that whether those fruits and vegetables were organic or conventionally produced is far less important.

And between 20 and 40 percent of those fruits and vegetables are lost to weeds, pests and diseases every year. Herbicides like glyphosate can help growers increase yields without increasing the amount of land and other resources used.

“Crop protection technology is an essential part of American agriculture, helping ensure that every person is able to access affordable and healthy food,” said Collins, “and CLA applauds EPA for following a risk- and exposure-based approach.”