A bold new study has shown that the herbicide glyphosate passes through breast milk. Glyphosate is used in agriculture on genetically modified crops and is best known as the main ingredient in Monsanto's RoundUp. This study, facilitated by Moms Across America and Sustainable Pulse, is the first of its kind. The research team found "high" levels of glyphosate in 30 percent of breast milk samples tested.
The breast milk study, according to Sustainable Pulse, contradicts industry claims that glyphosate does not accumulate in human tissue. This initial breast milk testing indicates, according to the research team, that Monsanto and the nation's regulatory bodies were wrong and that glyphosate is a possible health threat.
On Monday, because of these findings, the Organic Consumers Association (OCA) called on the Food & Drug Administration (FDA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to ban the use of glyphosate. "For years Monsanto has claimed that glyphosate, the key active ingredient in its Roundup-brand herbicide is 'safe' because the human body excretes it," said Ronnie Cummins, director of the OCA, according to eNews Park Forest. "This pilot study is the first of its kind to prove that Monsanto is wrong. In fact, this preliminary study shows that glyphosate accumulates in our bodies, and mothers are now passing the toxin on to their infants via breast milk."
If the breast milk results and the team's interpretation of them are correct, it wouldn't be the first time that Monsanto has provided inaccurate information to the public. According to Huffington Post, in 1996, New York's Attorney General gave Monsanto a $50,000 fine for false advertising. The company's marketing for RoundUp included the statements, "Remember that environmentally friendly Roundup herbicide is biodegradable. It won't build up in the soil so you can use Roundup with confidence along customers' driveways, sidewalks and fences… "
Moms Across America and Sustainable Pulse are also calling for long-term independent testing to make sure that glyphosate herbicide formulations like RoundUp are not bio-accumulative or toxic. They urge for this future testing to include testing relevant to children's health. In addition, they suggest Congress should supply funding for this independent research.
Nearly all of the corn and soybean grown in the United States has been genetically modified to resist and sprayed with Roundup. The Vancouver Sun reported Monday that the use of Roundup has "increased in the U.S. from 15 million pounds a year in 1996 to 159 million pounds a year in 2012."
While consumer protection groups call for the banning of glyphosate because it has been found in breast milk, biotech companies, like Monsanto, are donating enormous amounts of money to try to sway voters in the upcoming measures.
[Photo by Sarah Boynton Photography. Cropped to fit format.]