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The German government: Disclose secret industry studies on glyphosate herbicide

The German government: Disclose secret industry studies on glyphosate herbicide
  
  

 

Why this is important

Pesticides and herbicides such as Roundup are approved worldwide on the basis of industry studies that are unpublished and kept secret from the public.

However, the German government report on glyphosate, the main chemical ingredient of Roundup, written in 1998, reveals that serious toxic effects, such as birth defects, were found in industry's animal studies on the chemical. These findings were dismissed by the German government for scientifically questionable reasons.[1]

Independent scientists and the public are unable to evaluate these industry studies because they are kept secret under “commercial confidentiality” agreements with regulators. This is counter to good scientific method, which depends on open publication so that the scientific community can scrutinize the findings and repeat or refine experiments in order to confirm, refute or qualify the results.

Now the German government has completed a new draft report for the re-evaluation of glyphosate, in which it claims that no toxic effects on fertility, reproduction or foetal development in laboratory animals are revealed in the industry studies.[2]

However, there is no verifiable evidence for these claims, since the industry studies are still kept hidden. The German government holds the industry data on glyphosate.

Please tell the German government that it’s time to come clean and publish on the Internet all the long-term industry toxicology studies on glyphosate and other pesticides. The data must be made available in a form that enables scientists to re-analyze it (e.g. Word or Excel, not pdf), so that they can check whether claims of safety are reliable.

Notes

1. Antoniou, M., et al. (2012). Teratogenic effects of glyphosate-based herbicides: Divergence of regulatory decisions from scientific evidence. J Environ Anal Toxicol S4:006. http://www.omicsonline.org/2161-0525/2161-0525-S4-006.php?aid=7453

2. http://www.bfr.bund.de/en/the_bfr_has_finalised_its_draft_report_for_the_re_evaluation_of_glyphosate-188632.html

Posted January 28, 2014
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