On November 16, the European Commission extended the approval of glyphosate for another ten years. In Haute-Vienne, the reactions to this decision are numerous and especially fierce. The peasant confederation condemns the “monumental mistake”.
Another ten years. On November 16, the European Commission decided to extend for ten years the authorization of glyphosate, the most used herbicide in the world, which is sold on the market under the name Roundup and is produced by Monsanto, an American giant specializing in agrochemicals.
In 2015, it was classified as ” probably carcinogenic to humans » by the World Health Organization (WHO). According to a study by the National Institute for Health and Medical Research (Inserm) published in 2021, the phytosanitary product could cause leukemia, especially in children.
However, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) concluded in its latest report published in July 2023 that glyphosate does not represent “ there is no critical area “. The report relied on by the European Commission.
There are many reactions in Haute-Vienne. Doctor Pierre-Michel Périnaud, president of the pesticide association Alerte des médecins, is horrified. ” If we translate, to say that we have no alternatives to glyphosate, which is also incorrect, means that since we have no alternatives, it is a shame for the demonstrated carcinogenic effects and endocrine disruption. That means, you have to give the whole sentence! »
Christophe Gatineau, an expert on alternative agriculture, is also disturbed by this European decision: “ Since this is the only product on the market, there is no research to find others. It is obvious that, quite naturally, we will keep glyphosate. I think it was obvious and everyone, I mean companies and European health authorities, is working in that direction. We have been listening to the same discourse about glyphosate for fifty years! »
For its part, the Peasants’ Association condemns ” monumental mistake “and” scandalous decision » in a press release, as she campaigned for France to vote to ban him. ” In France, we are committed to phasing out this product. It was the right way for us to remove it from the farmer’s toolbox, knowing that, for mixed crop and livestock systems like we practice in Limousin, glyphosate-free is very easy. », laments Philippe Babaudou, spokesman for the Confédération paysanne de la Haute-Vienne.
The only happy person in the story: the Chamber of Agriculture, which feels a kind of relief. ” The fact is that we have molecules that are dangerous, but EFSA does not really agree with that. What I do know is that in France the use of glyphosate is regulated, unlike other products which are not at all. », said Bertrand Venteau, president of the Department’s Chamber of Agriculture.
Associations for environmental protection have already announced their intention to challenge the decision of the European Commission.