Is This the Beginning of the End of Glyphosate?


With the recent news that the World Health Organization’s (WHO’s) International Agency for Research on Cancer has labeled glyphosate—the active ingredient in the world’s most widely used weedkiller, Roundup—as “probably carcinogenic to humans,” those of us who oppose GMOs and the rampant overuse of glyphosate that goes with them finally have a ray of hope.

The announcement was accompanied by the usual shenanigans from Roundup’s creator, Monsanto—in this instance, a demand for a retraction to the WHO report.

The WHO is the health arm of the United Nations, which as you probably know, represents a majority of world’s countries—countries that have resisted GMOs and countries that have embraced them. The fact that this report comes from the WHO is significant in that many of the countries represented have seen the deleterious effects of Roundup up close and personal.

While listening to discussion of this issue on the radio, I heard an interview with a Native American woman who said that because of how her culture reveres corn, the contamination of her corn crops with GMO seeds and chemicals is the equivalent of someone destroying a church.

Listening to her interview gave me the strong feeling that 50 years from now we will look back on this chemical era of agriculture as the Dark Ages of farming. We will view this time as we view other moments in history that cause us to wonder why it took so long for people to “get it.”

Just as we got that women should have the right to vote and realized that smoking causes cancer, we’ll one day “get it” about chemical farming. We’ll realize that it’s an inhumane practice, one that’s damaging not just to our environment, but also to our future, our children, and our very souls.

I believe we learn, grow, change and adapt when enough of us (yes, there will always be stragglers) understand the consequences of our behavior. More of us are learning now.

Let’s hope this report is the beginning of the end of Roundup. And more importantly, let’s hope that we can all see that the solution to our agricultural problems is already right before us: regenerative organic agriculture. It can help reverse climate change. It can help our planet heal. It can feed us, safely, and without harm to our farmers and families.

It is the more enlightened, evolved, and modern way to feed the world.

Really, regenerative organic farming is the only way to feed the world.



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6 Responses to Is This the Beginning of the End of Glyphosate?

  1. Donna in Delaware April 1, 2015 at 10:58 am #

    We need to keep appreciating our farmers. I have so much respect for what they do so we really should support them as much as possible. I wish that they all will get in line and ban the use of glyphosate. I understand that it is difficult sometimes because on their land they grow crops for large companies. These companies dictate to the farmers what they want them to do and grow, without really compensating the farmers. Those farmers that have gone organic, are sometimes getting drift from neighboring farms that haven’t, thereby contaminating their organic crops. It’s a vicious cycle that only the farmers everywhere, especially in large areas can stop, and stop they must or lose financial support from the communities that sometimes purchase from them. Large companies don’t care because they already have their money and power.

    I hope that the future will look brighter for the farmers in this country, that they will continue to grow the nourishing and necessary foods cleanly, so that our children will grow, and stay healthy and nourished for all time. Let us do it for ourselves and let’s help them do so too!

  2. Alice Green April 1, 2015 at 11:28 am #

    If enough people who buy Monsanto products could have a change of heart and care about our world and children and their future, we could end this horrible killing of our planet. The only thing Monsanto cares about is profit, so the only way to get them to stop this is to slow down and end their profit off of the sale of their products. Boycott them until their bottom line is low enough for their brains to change course and stop production of this poison. Less money in their wallet is the only thing that matters to them. It may be the only way to stop their destroying our world.

  3. Mel Landers April 3, 2015 at 6:51 pm #

    The carcinogenic properties are just the tip of the iceberg; as researchers are finally discovering the multiple ways that this endocrine disruptor damages our bodies. They have only recently understood the mechanisms of Glyphosates actions inside the human body system. The inhibition of beneficial intestinal bacteria, suppresses the production of vital metabolic products that our bodies cannot produce for themselves, but that we cannot long survive without. Declaring glyphosate to be carcinogenic is an important first step on the journey to a total ban.

    Regenerative agriculture is a good term for what we need. I am a teacher of the Indigenous American agricultural system practiced for thousands of years before the European conquest. Those who established the principles of permaculture, borrowed heavily from this system. But, it in its original form that it is the most beneficial. It makes agricultural production resistant to both drought and flooding, prevents erosion, improves soil structure and fertility each year and out yields conventional methods.

    The introduction of Indigenous American crops to the rest of the world, 500 years ago, initiated an agricultural revolution that saved many millions of people from starvation throughout the “old world.” Maize in Asia, potatoes in Europe and peanuts in Africa were the prominent weapons in that revolution. It will take some experimentation to adapt the system to mechanization. But once this is accomplished, the re-introduction of the Indigenous American methods will instigate an agricultural revolution in our time. We need it.

  4. Mel Landers April 3, 2015 at 7:17 pm #


    I have been away from my farm for many years now. Your father and the staff at the Rodale Institute were a great help to me in the 20 years that I farmed. But, my farming was experimental. I was doing trials with the Indigenous American system I have now been studying 45 years.

    When I posted on your blog, I did not know you were Robert Rodale’s daughter nor that you are now head of the company. I would like to send you a copy of my e-book, “The Forest Garden.” I think that, you above most anyone else, would appreciate the wisdom of the ancient Indigenous American agricultural wisdom.

    Mel Landers
    Jinotepe, Nicaragua

  5. Peter Jurew April 6, 2015 at 2:28 pm #

    Re: your vision of “50 years from now we will look back on this chemical era of agriculture as the Dark Ages of farming” …

    While staying with my family in a cottage on a sustainable, solar-powered organic farm in Carmel Valley, California, recently – with WWOOFers running almost the entire place – I had a similar thought. Imagine the day when the very use of the word ‘organic’ is unnecessary and the healthy nutritious things we eat are simply called … Food!

  6. Evan Carmichael April 13, 2015 at 1:02 pm #

    Wow thanks for sharing Maria!

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