A California jury recently awarded a school groundskeeper $289 million in damages after he claimed that the weed killer Roundup® gave him cancer. The ingredient in the weed killer alleged to have caused his disease is glyphosate. Now, troubling reports are surfacing that glyphosate has been detected in popular children’s breakfast foods such as Cheerios®, Lucky Charms® and Quaker Old-Fashioned Oats®.
The environmental watchdog group Environmental Working Group (EWG), focuses on the presence of toxic chemicals in our environment and exposes corporate accountability. EWG’s studies have shown that almost three-fourths of the 45 foods that they tested have high levels of glyphosate. Glyphosate was identified by the World Health Organization as a “probable carcinogen” in 2015, and the jury in the California verdict appears to agree.
Obviously, the makers of these popular breakfast foods disagree with the potential danger, alleging that their food products meet regulatory guidelines set forth by the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulations. A spokesperson for General Mills® stated that ”our products are safe and without questions they meet regulatory safety levels.”
Quaker® released a statement as well stating that “they do not add glyphosate during any part of the milling process,” and that “glyphosate is commonly used by farmers across the industry who apply it pre-harvest.”
Kellogg® also issued a similar statement stating that they follow EPA standards for safety levels of these agricultural residues “and the ingredients we purchase from suppliers for our foods fall under these limits.“
The general public may not be so convinced, and many question the minimum guidelines themselves. If the EPA’s minimum regulatory guidelines for the presence of glyphosate in food products were developed prior to the determination that the chemical caused cancer, those minimum guidelines may not be safe either, and may need to be revised.
Also, the cumulative effect of ingestion over a period of time has been determined to be rising.
Olga Naidenko, Ph.D., a senior science advisor with EWG, believes that glyphosate does not belong in children’s food at all and studies have shown that glyphosate has been detected in people urine which likely comes from dietary exposure.
This is a developing story and further research needs to be conducted immediately to determine the effects of this cancer-causing chemical in our food products.