Fresh EU Assessment of Glyphosate

Conveyed by Chandre Dharmawardena, 25 June 2021: “NEW EU REPORT:  Assessment Group on Glyphosate, 15 June 2021”

Main findings
The dRAR [draft Renewal Assessment Report] consists of 11,000 pages, which is substantially larger than an average dRAR. In comparison, a typical assessment report for an active substance in the EU is less than 5.000 pages.

Based on the available information, the following conclusions could be drawn:
• Germ cell mutagenicity: on basis of the available information and the considerations in the Guidance on the Application of the CLP criteria, the AGG does not consider the criteria for classification with respect to germ cell mutagenicity in Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 to be fulfilled. The AGG proposes that classification of glyphosate as for germ cell mutagenicity genotoxic or mutagenic is not justified.

• Carcinogenicity: taking all the evidence into account i.e. animal experiments, epidemiological studies and statistical analyses, and based on the considerations in the Guidance on the Application of the CLP criteria, the AGG does not consider the criteria for classification with respect to carcinogenicity in Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 and the dedicated guidance document15 to be fulfilled. The AGG proposes that a classification of glyphosate with regard to carcinogenicity is not justified.

• Reproductive toxicity: on basis of the available information and the considerations in theGuidance on the Application of the CLP criteria, the AGG does not consider the criteria for classification with respect to reproductive toxicity in Regulation (EC) No 1272/2008 to be fulfilled. The AGG proposes that classification of glyphosate as toxic for reproduction is not justified.

• Based on the available information and the considerations in the Guidance on the Applicationof the CLP Criteria, the AGG does not consider the criteria for classification with respect to specific target organ toxicity (STOT) to be fulfilled. The AGG proposes that classification for specific target organ toxicity is not justified, neither for single nor repeated exposure (STOT-SE and STOT-RE) respectively.

• Based on the available toxicological information, the AGG proposes that the current classification as “causes serious eye damage” (H318) should be retained.

The AGG proposes revised toxicological reference values for glyphosate, to be used in risk assessment for consumers and for operators, workers, bystanders and residents. Two of the revised reference values are more conservative (lower) than the values established in the previous renewal process for glyphosate. The proposed revised reference values result from the re-assessment of existing studies using a more conservative approach.

For all proposed uses, a safe use could be demonstrated for operators and workers (both without personal protective equipment) and for bystanders. For residents, a safe use was demonstrated for all proposed uses, except for one scenario in which due to a high predicted spray drift no safe use could be demonstrated.
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ALSO NOTE

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A COMMENT from CHANDRE DHARMAWARDENA, in Canada, 24 July 2021:
The “eye damage” mentioned here is caused by careless mixing during handling, and occurs when the concentrated substance splashes on the eye. However, it is standard practice to wear eye protection even in using power tools or mixing devices.

The degree of damage can be similar to what may happen if commonly used hand sanitizer fluid is sprayed or splashed into the eye. The US Environmental Protection Agency fact sheet on glyphosate has a discussion on this.

Glyphosate used in the field is not pure glyphosate, but contains some 5%-10% additives (known as adjuvants, surfactants) which are soap like substances, added to make the glyphosate adhere better to leaves etc.. They contribute to the eye hazard. The 10% additives when diluted with water a 100 times only a negligible amount of surfactant (0.005%-0.01%) actually lands per sq. meter of land surface, and even less on the eye- if a bit of spray fall in. So the danger is in handling the undiluted canister which may contain 365g/litre (4lbs/gallon) of active substance which may be the potassium salt of glyphpsate..

It has sometimes been claimed, without proof, that the glyphosate sent to SL contains more poisonous additives than sold in Europe. This is just myth, and even if a surfactant that is 10 times more poisonous is used, at the level of dilution used, it becomes irrelevant., In fact, Sri Lanka has banned imports containing the surfactant “tallowamin”, widely used in USA and the West, due to pressure from people who wish to cripple the effectiveness of these products or who are driven by unreasonable fear. More danger to eyes comes from particulate dust and noxious vehicle fumes.

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A FRESH COMMENT from Chandre Dharmawardena, 25 June 2021:

The “eye damage” mentioned here is caused by careless mixing during handling, and occurs when the concentrated substance splashes on the eye. However, it is standard practice to wear eye protection even in using power tools or mixing devices.

The degree of damage can be similar to what may happen if commonly used hand sanitizer fluid is sprayed or splashed into the eye. Chilli powder is far more dangeorus! In Sri Lanka acetic acid which causes far more eye damage is used freely in the rubber industry. The US Environmental Protection Agency fact sheet on glyphosate has a discussion on this.

Glyphosate used in the field is not pure glyphosate, but contains some 5%-10% additives (known as adjuvants, surfactants) which are soap like substances, added to make the glyphosate adhere better to leaves etc.. They contribute to the eye hazard. The 10% additives when diluted with water a 100 times only a negligible amount of surfactant (0.005%-0.01%) actually lands per sq. meter of land surface, and even less on the eye- if a bit of spray fall in. So the danger is in handling the undiluted canister which may contain 365g/litre (4lbs/gallon) of active substance which may be the potassium salt of glyphosate..

It has sometimes been claimed, without proof, that the glyphosate sent to SL contains more poisonous additives than sold in Europe. This is just myth, and even if a surfactant that is 10 times more poisonous is used, at the level of dilution used, it becomes irrelevant., In fact, Sri Lanka has banned imports containing the surfactant “tallowamine”, widely used in USA and the West, due to pressure from people who wish to cripple the effectiveness of these products or who are driven by unreasonable fear. More danger to eyes comes from particulate dust and noxious vehicle fumes.

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One response to “Fresh EU Assessment of Glyphosate

  1. chandre DW

    The “eye damage” mentioned here is caused by careless mixing during handling, and occurs when the concentrated substance splashes on the eye. However, it is standard practice to wear eye protection even in using power tools or mixing devices.

    The degree of damage can be similar to what may happen if commonly used hand sanitizer fluid is sprayed or splashed into the eye. The US Environmental Protection Agency fact sheet on glyphosate has a discussion on this.

    Glyphosate used in the field is not pure glyphosate, but contains some 5%-10% additives (known as adjuvants, surfactants) which are soap like substances, added to make the glyphosate adhere better to leaves etc.. They contribute to the eye hazard. The 10% additives when diluted with water a 100 times only a negligible amount of surfactant (0.005%-0.01%) actually lands per sq. meter of land surface, and even less on the eye- if a bit of spray fall in. So the danger is in handling the undiluted canister which may contain 365g/litre (4lbs/gallon) of active substance which may be the potassium salt of glyphpsate..

    It has sometimes been claimed, without proof, that the glyphosate sent to SL contains more poisonous additives than sold in Europe. This is just myth, and even if a surfactant that is 10 times more poisonous is used, at the level of dilution used, it becomes irrelevant., In fact, Sri Lanka has banned imports containing the surfactant “tallowamin”, widely used in USA and the West, due to pressure from people who wish to cripple the effectiveness of these products or who are driven by unreasonable fear. More danger to eyes comes from particulate dust and noxious vehicle fumes.

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