Monsanto is well-known for developing a herbicide glyphosate (aka Roundup). Monsanto created GM seeds specifically to withstand Roundup, making a farmer’s crop production more successful. Roundup is now the most widely-used herbicide in the United States.
Monsanto’s genetically modified Roundup Ready crops include soy, maize (corn), sorghum, canola, alfalfa, and cotton. These crops are used in numerous foods and materials we use every day, which are sprayed down with the Roundup mixture.
From mass agriculture to backyard gardening, it has been sprayed on most of the produce we cultivate. So much so, in fact, that a sampling of waterways in 38 states of the US found glyphosate in the majority of rivers and streams tested. It was also found in about 70 percent of rainfall samples. Perhaps most disturbingly, some studies have even found elevated levels of glyphosate in American women’s breast milk.
For years, the Environmental Protection Agency deemed glyphosate non-harmful to humans. But now, an agency of the World Health Organization has declared that it “probably” causes cancer in people. In the wake of these studies, whole countries, like Sri Lanka, Brazil, Mexico and the Netherlands, are restricting or fully outlawing Roundup use.
Global multinational retail giant Costco has dumped Monsanto’s flagship pesticide product, RoundUp, a spokesperson on behalf of the corporation only just announced on May 29, 2019 that the company is not planning to sell the product this coming season.
The timing is not surprising, given that Monsanto, owned by Bayer AG, just lost three court cases in which the product was alleged to cause cancer. The third and latest trial resulted in awarding in favour of the plaintiffs, a couple in their seventies, suffering from non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma and brain cancer linked to non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma.
Costco has agreed to remove Roundup and all other herbicides containing glyphosate from its shelves, according to the anti-GMO awareness group, ‘Moms Across America’.
This group petitioned Costco, Lowes and Home Depot in the US to stop selling the products after the recent Johnson vs. Monsanto-cancer verdict was upheld. The case set the precedent for thousands of other cases against Monsanto, all claiming exposure to Roundup caused non-Hodgkins lymphoma.
The mom’s group gathered over 150,000 signatures on change.org, asking the three retailers to stop selling the toxic herbicide. Costco was the first to respond, according to Moms Across America founder Zen Honeycutt.
Not just the direct use of herbicides such as Roundup, but runoff from the herbicides into neighbouring farmlands, streams, and populated areas is also a huge concern, as it is exposing others to this potential poison without even making a choice to do so.. This is another great reason to live organically is to support local and ethical farming. Consumers need to send strong message that they favour ethically and organically grown products over those grown with genetically modified seeds and sprayed with pesticides like Roundup.