Brazilian Court Overturns Ban On Weedkiller Glyphosate
On Monday a Brazilian court ruled to overturn a ban on products containing the popular weedkiller glyphosate, which knocked down a previous ruling that had been set to disrupt the soy planting season which was due to begin this month.
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The judge ruled last month to halt registration of new products which are glyphosate-based in the country and suspended existing registrations after 30 days, until health agency, Anvisa, issues a pending ruling on its safety. The 30-day deadline was due to pass on Monday, just as the first days of soy planting got underway. The injunction and the reversal also applied to the fungicide thiram and insecticide abamectin.
Judge Kássio Marques, of the regional federal court of the first district in Brazil, based his ruling suspending the injunction on the government’s argument that banning the insecticide, fungicide, and glyphosate agrochemicals could harm the country’s economy. Speaking about the decision Marques stated,
“nothing justifies the suspension and abrupt removal of registrations of products containing glyphosate, abamectin, and thiram as active ingredients without an analysis of the serious impacts on the country’s economy and population in general.”
Brazil is the world’s largest exporter of soy and relies heavily on the agrochemicals, with Bayer AG’s Monsanto SA being the biggest seller of the weedkiller in the country. Bayer crop science chief said in a statement; “This ruling is very good news for Brazilian growers, who count on glyphosate-based herbicides to control weeds and grow their crops safely and effectively.”
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Anvisa, which has been reviewing the safety of the weedkiller glyphosate since 2008 without issuing a final decision, has said it was aware of the ruling made on Monday and would be taking the necessary technical and legal steps in response.
Bayer and Monsanto have said that decades of use and numerous review of the weedkiller glyphosate show the agrochemical to be safe, however, hundreds of lawsuits alleging Monsanto’s glyphosate products cause various types of cancer have been making their way through the US courts.
A study conducted by the World Health Organization in 2015 classified the weedkiller glyphosate as probably carcinogenic to humans.
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