On June 30 the European Union glyphosate license will expire, a huge victory for activists and a huge upset for Monsanto.
For the third time, the European Commission has failed to secure enough support from EU governments to get an extension on glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup.
Currently, France and Malta have voted directly against re-approving glyphosate, with Germany, Italy, Austria, and several other countries abstaining.
It will now be up to the European Commission to decide whether or not to keep glyphosate on store shelves. Most likely a “technical extension” will be granted for 12-18 months in order for there to be time for another study on the product. Originally glyphosate was supposed to be approved for 15 years.
The recent controversy was started when the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer released an assessment stating that glyphosate “probably” causes cancer in humans.
Many environmental groups are praising the failure of a permanent extension, but are still calling for it to banned outright. Greenpeace food policy director says, “The Commission is about to give glyphosate an unreasonable grace period, which will continue to leave people and nature exposed to the controversial weedkiller. It should use this time to draw up a glyphosate exit plan. Glyphosate is the most widely used herbicide in Europe and has been linked to serious health concerns and loss of wildlife. It’s time for Europe to plan for a glyphosate-free future.”