Roundup | An Herbicide Leading to Massive Consequence
Roundup is a best-selling herbicide produced by biotechnology giant Monsanto, known to be causing a number of health and environmental consequences that are currently troubling many experts worldwide. Roundup has been found to be creating farmland-crushing ‘superweeds’, exhibiting cellular toxicity to humans, and even increasing the risk of infertility. Many of these issues have to do with the main active ingredient in Roundup known as glyphosate, a problematic and dangerous substance that is known for its DNA-damaging properties. Roundup has been the number one selling herbicide since at least 1980, and is responsible for about half of Monsanto’s overall revenue.
The usage of widely popular Roundup by farmers and consumers alike has been spawning highly resistant superweeds for quite some time. It has been found that the herbicide has actually created an entirely new category of ‘mutated’ weeds that are extremely resistant to the product’s active ingredient glyphosate. In some reports, which are quite conservative, it is estimated that these resistant weeds currently cover over 4.5 million hectares in the United States. Outside of the US, experts state that world-wide land coverage could reach or exceed at least 120 million hectares based on evidence from 2010. Therefore, the land area affected could be much great. With the presence of the mutated weeds being reported in Australia, Brazil, Chile, Europe and South Africa, it appears that they are spreading.
Roundup’s Infertility Link
Roundup is also posing serious threats to human health. At a shockingly low concentration of only 57.2 parts per million (ppm), which is actually 200 times below the levels of agricultural use, Monsanto’s Roundup was found by scientists to lead to cell death. Killing half of the cell population in the study, French scientists determined that Roundup exhibit direct toxicity to human cells — human kidney cells in particular. Previous research also indicated that Roundup may lead to infertility. Researchers found that Roundup killed testicular cells in rats in as little as 1 to 48 hours. During the time frame, the testicular cells of the mature rats were either damaged or killed.
Roundup has even been found to be contaminating the water supply. Scientists have detected Roundup in 41% of the 140 groundwater samples taken from Catalonia Spain that were actually above the limit of quantification.
Natural Society staff contribution