Will World Health Organization force review of IARC’s glyphosate cancer determination?

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

IARC — the International Agency for Research on Cancer — is under the purview of WHO and tasked with classifying whether certain foods, chemicals, and lifestyle choices cause cancer. . . . [O]ne recent decision is raising suspicions that the agency is more of an activist group than a scientific one.

In March 2015, IARC surprised the international regulatory and scientific community by classifying the widely used herbicide glyphosate as “probably carcinogenic.” . . . .

The ruling contradicted most analyses of glyphosate, which is widely viewed as the aspirin of weed killers, hugely beneficial with few risks. . . .

. . . .

Then details about the IARC’s process started to come to light. A key person behind IARC’s move was an American environmental activist, Christopher Portier. IARC insiders quietly inserted him as the technical adviser to the agency’s glyphosate-review panel . . . The agency did not reveal that Portier had a massive conflict of interest: His employer is the Environmental Defense Fund, a group well known for its opposition to GMOs and pesticides. . . .

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Portier wasn’t the only activist involved. The lead author of the glyphosate report, Kathryn Guyton, gave a speech in 2014 to an NGO group. . . in which she stated that the herbicide studies planned for 2015 had shown clear indications of a link to breast cancer, demonstrating her total lack of objectivity.

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Meanwhile, farmers who use glyphosate to protect their crops and boost yields are caught in the crossfire. Even if glyphosate is banned, they will need to use another herbicide, probably more toxic, because the romantic notion of hand-weeding millions of acres of crops is promoted only by those who have never done it.

Read full, original post: ‘The Facebook Age of Science’ at the World Health Organization

  • Peter Olins

    “Glyphosate…the aspirin of weedkillers.” Maybe not.

    For a 50 year old man, a daily aspirin increases the risk of death to that of dying in a car accident, and the risk of non-life-threatening damage is even greater.