Glyphosate, What Is It, and How Does It Affect You

BY Environmental Health News TIMEMarch 3, 2022 PRINT

Since it first went on the market in 1974, glyphosate has been used for weed control, as an exfoliant to eradicate unwanted vegetation and illegal crops, and as a crop desiccant—a chemical applied to crops to dry them out more quickly before harvest.

What is Glyphosate?

As a non-selective herbicide, it kills most plants. Scientists now link glyphosate to a number of human health problems, from cancer and neurological diseases to endocrine disruption and birth defects. But the full range of glyphosate’s health effects remains unknown.

What is Glyphosate used for?

Various formulations of glyphosate-based herbicides, like Monsanto’s Roundup, are used in agriculture and forestry. Since the mid-1990s, global use has risen dramatically, thanks to the introduction of genetically engineered “Roundup Ready” crops like corn, soybeans, cotton, and alfalfa that resist damage from the herbicide. Today, Roundup and other glyphosate-based herbicides are also frequently used on lawns, gardens, parks, and school grounds for weed control.

Where is Glyphosate?

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