Monsanto is a public trading agrochemical company that boasts, "[we] help farmers produce food in a sustainable way."
Once again, however, Monsanto finds itself in hot water when unsealed documents revealed the company may have created their own “studies” that led many to believe the use of glyphosate is safe.
Glyphosate is an herbicide used to regulate plant growth, according to the National Pesticide Information Center. RoundUp, a weedkiller distributed by Monsanto, uses glyphosate as one of its main ingredients. Industry-funded research has long claimed glyphosates are safe when used according to directions. But a San Francisco federal court dismisses such claims by questioning the authenticity of industry research. Judge Vince Chhabria opened documents that revealed Monsanto was informed that glyphosate may lead to non-Hodgkin lymphoma, a form of cancer that starts in the immune system. Dan Jenkins, a Monsanto executive, stated in an email that he should “win a medal” if he is able to kill off such claims about the effects of glyphosate.
Although the company continues to claim glyphosate does not cause cancer, the legitimacy comes with a few raised eyebrows when another company email from Monsanto executive, William F. Heydens, stated that the company is allowed to ghostwrite their own research and simply hire academics to edit and sign their names to the findings.
Declarations of interest included in a Monsanto-financed paper on glyphosate that appeared in the journal Critical Reviews in Toxicology said panel members were recruited by a consulting firm. Email traffic made public shows that Monsanto officials discussed and debated scientists who should be considered, and shaped the project.
Although the company is going through controversial times, it still stands by their original arguments that glyphosate is safe for humans to use. RoundUp can still be found on our store shelves, but perhaps we should think twice before spending our money on an early start to a cancerous outcome.
- Glyphosate is an herbicide used to regulate plant growth via National Pesticide Information Center
- San Francisco federal court dismisses such claims by questioning the authenticity of industry research via New York Times
- Unsealed documents revealed the company may have created their own “studies” that led many to believe the use of glyphosate is safe via New York Times
Read all stories by Marissa Ochoa