The [Sri Lankan] government has lifted [a two-year] ban on glyphosate for all crops throughout the country.
The Government imposed the glyphosate ban in 2015 over fears that this chemical was one of the causes of the kidney disease epidemic in the North-Central Province and elsewhere. In the absence of an effective alternative [herbicide], however, the tea industry in particular was severely hit, with plantations becoming plagued by weeds, and resulting in a drastic drop in production.
In March, Plantation Industries Minister Navin Dissanayake told the Sunday Times that the industry had faced a crop loss of [over $100,000,000] …due to the glyphosate ban.
Nevertheless, moves to lift the ban, even in limited form, has drawn flak from certain quarters, including those in the Government, with Health Minister Rajitha Senaratne and independent MP Ven. Athuraliye Rathana Thera being particularly vocal in their opposition to such moves.
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