UK Parliament Meeting Brings ‘Dangers’ of Roundup into Public Focus

2 July 2014 — Sustainable Pulse

The All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Agroecology, Chaired by the Countess of Mar, met in the Houses of Parliament in London on June 18, to discuss the possible harm caused by the world’s most popular herbicide – Roundup.

In what was one of the most comprehensive meetings ever held in Europe on Glyphosate and Roundup, experts from around the World gathered in London to share their expertise with the media, members of a number of UK political parties, NGO representatives and members of the general public.

The interest in the event was very high and Committee Room 10 of the Houses of Parliament was full to the rafters, with experts having traveled from as far away as Russia, China and the U.S., to listen to the four speakers give detailed presentations on how  the unanswered questions surrounding the possible harm caused by Glyphosate and Roundup should be approached.

If you would like to view the full presentations from the APPG Agroecology meeting in London please visit the following links:

Dr. Don M. Huber – Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology at Purdue University

Professor Malcolm Hooper – Professor of Medicinal Chemistry at the University of Sunderland

Dr. John Peterson “Pete” Myers – Founder, CEO and Chief Scientist of Environmental Health Sciences

Dr. Michael Antoniou – Reader in Molecular Genetics and Head of the Gene Expression and Therapy Group, Department of Medical and Molecular Genetics, King’s College London School of Medicine, UK.

APPG Agroecology: Background Information

Rounding Up Glyphosate: Is it really safe?

Meeting Outline:

Glyphosate is the most widely used weed-killer in the world. In addition to its use in agriculture and horticulture it is also used for weed control in many other circumstances, e.g. on paved surfaces. Two uses of glyphosate greatly increase the chances that it will be ingested by humans and farm animals – to desiccate cereal, pulse and oilseed crops prior to harvest and when used on Roundup Ready GM soya, maize and cotton crops. Glyphosate is being routinely detected in the blood and urine. It has also recently been found in human breast milk

Is it really safe?

Glyphosate is often presented as a benign chemical which is inactivated in the soil. However this is far from the case. Glyphosate interferes with enzymes in plants and microbes because of its ability to chelate (bind) trace metals and by its antibiotic action (it is patented for both). Other chemicals used in formulated products sold to farmers and gardeners enhance its toxic effects.

This meeting examined how these properties of glyphosate impact on the health of humans, the soil and wildlife from residues and traces being detected in humans and the environment as use of glyphosate based weed-killers , such as Roundup, escalates.