The immediate future of glyphosate weedkillers is likely to be decided at an EU Commission committee meeting next Thursday (9 November)...
The committee will be asked to vote on a proposal for a five-year approval, following the failure of the initial plan for a 10-year extension to gain sufficient support last week. The UK was among those who voted in favour of the longer term.
It was the second time in a month that the 28 member states had delayed a decision that needs to be taken before the current licence expires on 15 December this year.
Europe has been in a dither over glyphosate after the World Health Organization’s cancer agency concluded in March 2015 that it was “probably carcinogenic”.
The EU approved an 18-month extension in June 2016 to allow for further scientific study, which resulted in the European Chemical Agency concluding in March that there was no evidence to link glyphosate to cancer in humans.
The European Parliament last week called for glyphosate to be phased out over the next five years. They wanted an immediate ban on sales to consumers and its use in public spaces such as parks.
France, one of the countries opposing a 10-year approval, has said it would now be prepared to accept a four-year license extension.
Readers may be interested to hear what environmental health experts in New Zealand think about glyphosate. You can access a recent radio interview using this link:
The video produced by the My Garden Choice group may also help you to answer customer questions about the safety of glyphosate. Click here to access the site.