EU: Sign the Petition to ban Glyphosate
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IFOAM – Organics International (International Federation of Organic Agriculture Movements), the umbrella organisation of the organic world, has just launched a petition to ban glyphosate in the EU once and for all. Glyphosate has been shown to be harmful to humans and the environment. Despite massive protests glyphosate was relicensed for use in the EU for a limited period.
The bad news
Glyphosate and similar chemicals are ubiquitous: there is no escape from glyphosate, described by the World Health Organisation as 'probably carcinogenic to humans'. It is the most widely used herbicide since chemical inputs like fertiliser, insecticides and herbicides were introduced in agriculture. In consequence, it can be found in the environment – in soil, air, surface water and groundwater - and in the food we consume. The results of up to a third of tests carried out on British bread in recent years have been positive. Glyphosate degrades ecosystems and destroys the vegetation that insects, birds and small mammals depend on for food and shelter. By killing beneficial insects, glyphosate eliminates a natural means of pest control.
The good news
Organic methods of cultivation mean we don't actually need glyphosate and similar chemicals. Instead of using synthetic chemical inputs and spraying harmful pesticides and herbicides, organic organic farmers and growers use a whole range of non-toxic methods, such as crop rotation and cover crops, to promote soil fertility and suppress weeds.
In 2016 a campaign by thousands of people induced the European Commission to relicense glyphosate for 18 months instead of the intended 15 years. This was achieved despite intensive lobbying by the chemicals industry, but companies like Monsanto are still lobbying and paying for so-called studies to prove the safety of glyphosate.
This why IFOAM – Organics International is calling on the European Commission to propose to member states a ban on glypohosate, to reform the pesticide approval procedure and to set EU-wide mandatory reduction targets for pesticide use. It wants to to ensure that the scientific evaluation of pesticides in the EU is based on published studies commissioned by competent public authorities and is not manipulated by the pesticide industry. The ultimate aim of IFOAM – Organics International is a pesticide-free future.
IFOAM emphasises that this is an opportunity for people to make their voices heard via a European Citizens Initiative – a legal route that means the European Commission must listen if the organisation can collect one million signatures this year.
IFOAM -Organics International asks you to support their objectives by signing the petition to stop glyphosate on their website (www. ifoam.bio).
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