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  • This is Monsanto’s RoundUp.

  • It’s in cookies, breads, corn, crackers, chips, breakfast cereals, and beer.

  • The list goes on, and on, and on.

  • The active ingredient in RoundUp is called glyphosate, and it’s used by backyard gardeners

  • and industrial farmers alike to kill invasive weeds.

  • And whether glyphosate is harmful to humans or not

  • is something of a 66 billion dollar question

  • But first: What is glyphosate?

  • Commercial: There’s never been a herbicide like it before.

  • Glyphosate was originally introduced in 1974 by Monsanto.

  • Its use in American agriculture has soared nearly tenfold since Monsanto introduced the

  • first genetically-modified RoundUp Ready seeds in 1996.

  • Glyphosate is now used in more than 160 countries, with more than 1.4 billion pounds applied per year.

  • And while Monsanto lost patent protection over glyphosate herbicides in 2000, the company

  • still has about 40 percent of the 8 billion dollar global herbicide market because of

  • what is called thevirtuous cycle”:

  • Monsanto sells its genetically modified RoundUp-ready seeds to produce cotton, corn and other commodities

  • to make them resistant to glyphosate’s herbicidal effects.

  • More sales of the GMO seeds beget more use of Roundup; more herbicide use drives up demand

  • for Monsanto's GMO seeds.

  • For 25 years that cycle has enjoyed an unblemished run in our crops, soil, and food.

  • Until now.

  • Now Monsanto has its own invasive species creeping in: doubt.

  • On its website, Monsanto says glyphosate isabout half as toxic as table salt and more

  • than 25 times less toxic than caffeine."

  • More than 1,000 farmers and herbicide applicators stricken with non-Hodgkin's lymphoma disagree.

  • Hundreds of plaintiffs with cancer have filed a class-action lawsuit against the company.

  • In 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer, known as IARC, determined glyphosate

  • to be a “probable carcinogen.”

  • Remember that 66 billion dollars?

  • That’s where this comes in. It’s how much Bayer is offering to buy Monsanto for, but

  • if glyphosate is thought of as cancer-causing, it may back out of the deal completely.

  • But what would life without glyphosate look like?

  • According to Bloomberg agriculture expert Christopher Perrella, it wouldn’t be pretty.

  • The alternative would be a step back.

  • And it would definitely affect farmers, income, their profitability, the way they do business.

  • Eventually filters down to the consumer in terms of higher prices for meatsfor all food products.

  • The question now, after the EPA's own hand-picked experts have also voiced concerns, is what

  • the Trump EPA will do about it.

  • But with administrations from Clinton to Bush to Obama promoting GMOs, it seems unlikely

  • Trump’s EPA will be any different.

This is Monsanto’s RoundUp.

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ブルームバーグ - 世界トップの雑草キラーはがんを引き起こすのか? (Bloomberg - Does the World’s Top Weed Killer Cause Cancer?)

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    Tina Hsu に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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