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Is glyphosate carcinogenic or not? Differing assessments lead to dispute in EU

| | January 15, 2016

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this blog/article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis.

A bitter row has broken out over the allegedly carcinogenic qualities of a widely-used weedkiller, ahead of an EU decision on whether to continue to allow its use.

At issue is a call by the European Food and Safety Authority (Efsa) to disregard an opinion by the WHO’s International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) on the health effects of Glyphosate.

. . . [W]hile an analysis by the IARC last year found it is probably carcinogenic to humans, Efsa decided last month that it probably was not. That paves the way for the herbicide to be relicensed by an EU working group later this year, potentially in the next few weeks.

Within days of Efsa’s announcement, 96 prominent scientists – including most of the IARC team – had fired off a letter to the EU health commissioner, Vytenis Andriukaitis, warning that the basis of Efsa’s research was “not credible because it is not supported by the evidence”. . .

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. . . Efsa’s executive director Bernard Url hit back, complaining to the European parliament’s environment committee that the scientists had not seen the evidence, and were leaving the domain of science by making their criticisms public. . .

In a letter sent January 13, Url defended Efsa’s study as a “more comprehensive hazard assessment” than the IARC paper which, he said, had not tried to differentiate between the carcinogenic effects of glyphosate and other ingredients in pesticide packages, or their combined effects.

Efsa and IARC had agreed to meet early in 2016 “in an effort to clarify scientific divergences,” Url added.

Read full, original post: EU scientists in row over safety of Glyphosate weedkiller

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion, and analysis. Click the link above to read the full, original article.
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