Based on the currently available scientific evidence, glyphosate – a controversial herbicide used worldwide – cannot be considered a cancer. The European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) made the announcement on Tuesday.
“The ECHA’s Risk Assessment Committee has based its scientific opinion on an independent basis: the current classification of glyphosate will not change,” said Mark Rosenberg of the ECHA.
Glyphosate, one of the most widely used herbicides in the world, can cause eye damage or adversely affect the marine environment. “After a thorough review of the scientific evidence, a committee reiterated that the ‘carcinogen’ classification of glyphosate is not justified,” the ECHA said in a press release.
This assessment is indispensable for the European Commission to take an immediate decision on renewing the approval of this herbicide in the European Union. The current decision will expire on December 15, 2022, but will automatically be extended until the end of the evaluation process if no risk to individuals is identified.
Alternative product lost
The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and the ECHA’s EFSA concluded that “all possible hazards from glyphosate exposure to animals, humans and the environment have been postponed until July 2023”, a report that predicted early in the second half of 2022. Hundreds of contributions can be “counted”.
In March 2015, the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) of the World Health Organization (WHO) classified glyphosate as “possibly carcinogenic” in humans.
The Glyphosate Review Panel, comprising four reference member states (France, Hungary, the Netherlands and Sweden), will provide the EFSA with an updated feedback by the end of September, ahead of a series of consultations and final conclusions from the regulator.
France has set itself the goal of phasing out most of the use of this herbicide, which the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies as “possibly carcinogenic” by 2021, before it is completely banned by 2023. Farmers’ organizations oppose and point out the lack of alternative produce.