London (26.9.16) – We have been following the glyphosate health story since 2009 (1-11), culminating in a paper (12) just a few weeks ago regretting that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) (“a hotbed of anti-science activism, incompetence, and corruption”) had failed to publish a report completed by its cancer review committee last October that concluded that glyphosate, the world’s most widely used herbicide, is not carcinogenic to humans. Now EPA have done so (13) and in it they are quite clear in their conclusions.

Their new document focuses on the cancer effects only. After earlier assessments of carcinogenicity, “In 2015, a third review was done by the Cancer Assessment Review Committee (CARC). Relevant glyphosate data available to EPA at that time for glyphosate were re-evaluated, including studies submitted by the registrant and studies published in the open literature. The agency performed this evaluation in support of Registration Review in accordance with the 2005 Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment, classified glyphosate as “Not Likely to be Carcinogenic to Humans”.

EPA expects to complete its complete human health risk assessment in 2017 that will include an assessment of risk from anticipated exposures resulting from registered uses of glyphosate in residential.

End of story? Time will tell.


1. Are there health problems with glyphosate? CropGen (15.6.09) (

2. Another scare: this time it’s glyphosate. CropGen (27.8.10) (

3. U.S. law and GM . CropGen (4.3.11) (

4. Here we go again – again. CropGen (4.3.11) (

5. Better ban it, it’s dangerous. Well, maybe not. CropGen (7.1.13) (

6. The longer the better. CropGen (23.1.13) (

7. The correlation trap. CropGen (22.5.13) (

8. Russian switchback. CropGen (19.8.13) (

9. The end of the road? Wanna bet? CropGen (10.12.13) (

10. Glyphoschina. CropGen (27.2.16) (

11. Glyphoschina revisited. CropGen (20.5.16). (

12. The phony case against glyphosate. CropGen (16.8.16) (

13. Glyphosate Issue Paper: Evaluation of Carcinogenic Potential. EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs September 12, 2016. US Environmental Protection Agency (

And to think about:

Ludger Weß. a German writer on the economic, historical, legal and ethical aspects of science and technology, with a particular focus on genetic engineering and biotechnology, has recently mde an interesting observation. It seems that environmentalists, organic farmers and Greens, currently heavily involved in matters of crop protection, fiercely have criticised the European Commission for extending the registration of glyphosate. However they are calling upon that very same Commission to approve potassium phosphonate as an agent against fungal diseases for use in organic farming. This summer, Green ministers (in Germany) approved large-scale trials with this fungicide.
The remarkable thing is that both substances are phosphonates; neither occurs “in nature” and both are made by chemical synthesis in industrial laboratories.
Makes you wonder, doesn’t it, about the mental processes involved in approving some synthetic (“unnatural”?) chemicals for use in organic agriculture while others are vigorously proscribed.


Ludger Weß (17.9.16). Zwei-Klassen-Chemie (


  Glyphosate once more – it isn’t