Saturday, February 16, 2013

Give it back to Monsanto and Syngenta

In a seminar at the Biofach fair, Dr Hubert Weiger from the German environmental organization BUND, informed us about that Glyphosate, the active ingredient of the herbicide mostly known as Roundup, is now found in people's urine.

A recent study show:
"To determine if only individuals who are in direct contact with contaminated feed or glyphosate laced compounds are at risk of glyphosate poisoning a study was conducted in December 2011 of an urban population in Berlin. The urine of city workers, journalists and lawyers, who had no direct contact with glyphosate, was examined for glyphosate contamination by a research team at the University of Leipzig. The study found glyphosate in all urine samples at values ranging from 0.5 to 2 ng glyphosate per ml urine (drinking water limit: 0.1 ng / ml). None of the examinees had direct contact with agriculture."
Glyphosate was originally mainly used on weeds to clear land for planting, but is increasinglu used to kill off the crop just before harvest, so called dessication. Syngenta’s advertising brochure says “For professional producers chemical desiccation now counts among the standard measures to assure high quality production [...]. In this context one also speaks of the “economic maturity” of crops, as the usage of herbicides allows for a safe termination of the harvesting procedure.”

The report quoted above says, "for potatoes, spraying herbicides on the field immediately before harvest (2.5 l / ha), hardens the skin and reduces its susceptibility to late blight and germination, which improved the potatoes shelf life. Active compounds of the herbicide directly enter the potato through the leaves; however, decomposition of the poison takes place in the body of the consumer."

These companies that claims patents and trademark rights on their products should be hold accountable for where they end up. Ultimately, governments should ban the use of herbicides. There are readily available alternatives available. Their use will cost a bit more for farmers - but that is a small price to pay to avoid poisoning.

Until governments have taken action, my humble proposition is that we should collect the urine and send it to Monsanto, Syngenta and the others.

1 comment:

  1. Absolutely agree. But the only trouble with this response is that Monsanto/Syngenta may well use the urine as part of another compound designed to poison the environment.
    I have recently been watching BBCWorldNews. It is upsetting to see corporations like LUKOIL/CHEVRON/DUPONT as well as BP presenting high quality adverts to justify their constant exploitation of the biosphere, while pretending to take care of the natural environment.It becomes clear that such corporations know what they are doing, but are willing to lie about the consequences.
    J.Kelvyn Richards