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Organic Consumers Association

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Organic Consumers Association Comments on New Study Showing Glyphosate Found in Mothers' Breast Milk

April 7, 2014
CONTACT: Organic Consumers Association, Katherine Paul, 207.653.3090

FINLAND, Minn. €“ The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) today called on U.S. regulatory agencies, including the Food & Drug Administration (FDA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to ban the use of glyphosate based on a new pilot study showing that the toxic herbicide was found in the breast milk of American women. This finding contradicts industry claims that glyphosate does not accumulate in human tissue.

€œFor 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, national director of the OCA. €œThis 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.€

Results of the pilot study, conducted by Moms Across America and Sustainable Pulse, with support from Environmental Arts & Research, were released today. While the numbers are small, they are alarming. The study  revealed that the levels found in the breast milk of American women were found to be 760 to 1600 times higher than the European Drinking Water Directive allows for individual pesticides (Glyphosate is both a pesticide and herbicide), but less than the 700 ug/l maximum contaminant level (MCL) for glyphosate in the U.S.

The EPA, arguing that glyphosate is not bio-accumulative, recently raised the limits for the amount of glyphosate residue allowed on human food.

The study also analysed 35 urine samples and 21 drinking water samples from across the U.S. and found levels in urine that were over 10 times higher than those found in a similar survey done in the EU by Friends of the Earth Europe in 2013.

According to Sustainable Pulse, glyphosate-containing herbicides are the top-selling herbicides in the world and are sold under trademarks such as Monsanto€™s €˜Roundup€™. Monsanto€™s sales of Roundup jumped 73 percent to $371 million in 2013 because of its increasing use on genetically engineered crops (GE Crops). Glyphosate has also been found to be a powerful pesticide.

€œThis is another in a long line of studies showing the many ways in which glyphosate poses a real danger to human health,€ Cummins said. €œIt€™s time for Americans to demand that the FDA, USDA and EPA ban this toxin for good. Until then, at the very least, the FDA must require labels on foods that contain this dangerous toxin. And the best way to do that is to require mandatory labelling of foods that contain genetically modified organisms, most of which derive from crops that require massive amounts of Monsanto€™s Roundup.

We must also stop retailers from selling Roundup to consumers, for use on their lawns and gardens. And we need to put an end to the use of Roundup by municipalities to control weeds in parks and roadways. The best way to accomplish all of this is to ban Roundup and other glyphosate-containing herbicides and pesticides for good.€ Cummins said.

The study will be used to launch a country-wide plan for a follow-up study on blood, urine and breast milk with a significant number of samples carried out using the best testing equipment available and overlooked by expert scientists, according to the authors who have already secured funding for more extensive tests.


World€™s Number 1 Herbicide Discovered in U.S. Mothers€™ Breast Milk, Sustainable Pulse, April 7, 2014.

Heavy use of herbicide Roundup linked to health dangers-U.S. study, Reuters, April 25, 2013

Why Glyphosate Should Be Banned, Institute of Science in Society, Oct. 10, 2012

Monsanto€™s Roundup Herbicide May Be Most Important Factor in Development of Autism and Other Chronic Disease,, June 9, 2012

EPA to American People: 'Let Them Eat Monsanto's Roundup Ready Cake,' Sayer Ji, July 2, 2013

Pesticides may be more dangerous than testing reveals, study finds, Environmental Health News, February 11, 2014

Roundup Linked to Global Boom in Celiac Disease and Gluten Intolerance, by Dr. Anthony Samsel and Dr. Stephanie Seneff, Feb. 19, 2014

For press inquiries, please contact Katherine Paul by email or phone: 207.653.3090/

The Organic Consumers Association (OCA) is an online and grassroots non-profit 501(c)3 public interest organization campaigning for health, justice, and sustainability.

The Organic Consumers Fund is a 501(c)4 allied organization of the Organic Consumers Association, focused on grassroots lobbying and legislative action.

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