From GM Watch…

Scientist tells judge that Monsanto’s Roundup causes cancer

Courthouse News Service, 5 Mar 2018

Ritz, the first scientist to testify this week, warned that a study finding
no significant link between glyphosate and non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma can’t be trusted
due to several design flaws.

“I have to downgrade the importance of the AHS study for time exposure,” Ritz said.
“I can’t take this study seriously if it shows no effect because all the effects
are drowned in the noise of exposure misclassification.”

Additionally, because glyphosate became so ubiquitous by 2014, the study could
no longer credibly estimate its impact on health, she said.

“As soon as exposure becomes ubiquitous, it’s hard to determine what it does,”
Ritz said. “It’s just like cellphone use. Once everyone is using cellphones, we can
no longer estimate brain cancer risk from cellphones.”

After analyzing several other case studies that investigated potential links
between glyphosate and cancer, Ritz said she concluded “that to reasonable degree
of scientific certainty, glyphosate-containing products do cause Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma”.

The expert testimony is expected to continue through Friday. Dr. Dennis Weisenburger,
a pathologist from the City of Hope Medical Center, is expected to take the stand next.

EU Court of Justice strengthens the precautionary principle

Testbiotech considers these legal cases to be test cases breaking new ground in legal
jurisdiction. Now that legal clarity has been provided and these legal reviews
are admissible, the EU court has to clarify in more detail how it will deal with
scientifically-based concerns and the role of the precautionary principle.

European authorities violated own rules to conclude glyphosate is not carcinogenic

“For instance, both authorities ignored the fact that some of the tumour findings
were reproduced in the majority of studies and that the increases in kidney cancers
and malignant lymphomas were dose-dependent. Such reproducibility and dose-dependence
are strong confirmations that the cancer increases did not happen by chance and
that glyphosate was responsible.”

India slashes Monsanto's GMO seed royalty

Last year, the Indian government issued an order to control cotton seed prices
effective from the 2016-17 crop year. In a ruling, the antitrust regulator, Competition
Commission of India, accused the GMO giant of potentially abusing its dominant
position on the market. New Delhi said that Monsanto was free to leave the Indian
market if it does not want to accept the government-imposed price and royalty cuts
for its genetically modified cotton seeds. The American corporation controls
some 90 percent of the market, serving over seven million cotton farmers in India.

Remember French Scientist Gilles-Eric Seralini said “the other ingredients in
Glyphosate are a thousand times more toxic.”

Commercial pesticides: Not as safe as they seem - ScienceDaily,

March 8, 2018, Source: Frontiers

New regulations are needed to protect people and the environment from toxic pesticide
ingredients that are not currently subject to safety assessments. This is the conclusion
of the first comprehensive review of gaps in risk assessments for "adjuvants" -- ingredients
added to pesticide formulations to enhance the function or application of the
active ingredient. Ignoring the potential dangers of other ingredients in commonly
used commercial pesticides leads to inaccuracies in the safety profile of the
pesticide solution, as well as confusion in scientific literature on pesticide effects,
finds the review published in Frontiers in Public Health.

"Exposure to environmental levels of some of these adjuvant mixtures can affect
non-target organisms -- and even can cause chronic human disease," says Dr
Robin Mesnage from King's College London, who co-wrote the review with Dr Michael Antoniou.
"Despite this, adjuvants are not currently subject to an acceptable daily intake
and are not included in the health risk assessment of dietary exposures to pesticide

Pesticides are a mixture of chemicals made up of an active ingredient -- the
substance that kills or repels a pest -- along with a mixture of other ingredients
that help with the application or function of the active ingredient. These
other ingredients are known as adjuvants, and include dyes, anti-foaming agents and

Regulatory tests for pesticide safety are currently only done on the active ingredient,
which assumes the other ingredients have no effects. This means the full toxicity of
a pesticide formulation -- including those used in both agriculture and
domestic gardens -- is not shown.

"Currently, the health risk assessment of pesticides in the European Union and
in the United States focuses almost exclusively on the active ingredient," explains
Dr Mesnage. "Despite the known toxicity of adjuvants, they are regulated differently
from active principles, with their toxic effects being generally ignored."

Based on a review of current pesticide literature, the authors describe how
unregulated chemicals present in commercial formulations of pesticides could
provide a missing link between pesticide exposure and observed negative outcomes.

The researchers focused on glyphosate-based herbicides, the most used pesticide
worldwide. They point out that this weed killer has so many different adjuvant
formulations that a safety test of one weed killer does not test the safety of another.

"Studies comparing the toxicity of commercial weed-killer formulations to that
of glyphosate alone have shown that several formulations are up to 1,000 times more
toxic than glyphosate on human cells. We believe that the adjuvants are
responsible for this additional toxic effect," says Dr Mesnage.

The authors also highlight neonicotinoid insecticides -- strongly suspected to be
involved in the collapsing of bee colonies -- as another example of adjuvant toxicity
affecting non-target organisms. An adjuvant used in these insecticides to
increase the penetration of the active ingredient has been shown to cause varying
toxic effects in bees. On top of this, residues of the toxin have also been found
in honey, pollen and beeswax produced by contaminated bees.

The authors hope their review will stimulate discussion on the toxicity of commonly
used pesticides and encourage more thorough regulations.

"Testing of whole pesticide formulations instead of just active ingredients alone
would create a precautionary approach, ensuring that the guidance value for the
pesticide is valid for the worst-case exposure scenario," says Dr Mesnage.

Their findings have already had a considerable impact. The European Food
Safety Authority is now reassessing the validity of pesticide risk assessment
in the EU, and authors hope that this reassessment can extend to entire commercial
formulations of pesticides and their other ingredients.

Commercial pesticides: Not as safe as they seem

Journal Reference:

1. Robin Mesnage, Michael N. Antoniou. Ignoring Adjuvant Toxicity Falsifies the
Safety Profile of Commercial Pesticides. Frontiers in Public Health, 2018;
5 DOI: 10.3389/fpubh.2017.00361

Summary: This is the first comprehensive review of gaps in risk assessments for
adjuvants in pesticide formulations which are not currently subject to safety
assessments. Ignoring the potential dangers of other ingredients in commonly used
commercial pesticides leads to inaccuracies in the safety profile of the pesticide
solution, as well as confusion in scientific literature on pesticide effects.
The review suggests that new regulations are needed to protect people and the
environment from toxic pesticide ingredients.

“Don’t Hide What’s Inside”

Twin campaigns launched to safeguard UK's food and farms

Focused on issues around growing and importing GM crops, Safeguard our
Farms calls for rigorous regulation to protect people, animals and the environment
as well as effective measures to prevent contamination. Meanwhile,
Don’t Hide What’s Inside aims to protect our right to decide whether or not
to buy and eat GM through compulsory GM food labelling.

Annual monarch count shows butterfly still threatened

India's regulators under attack for inaction on illegal GM crops

Glyphosate exposure correlates with shortened pregnancy length - new study

EU’s GMO regulator ignored human health warnings over a Monsanto insecticidal corn

Yields have stagnated since GM Bt cotton introduction in India
Arty turns 11 this summer.