The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has extensively studied the health and safety of glyphosate for decades. EPA’s recent statements and conclusions are set forth in a number of official documents issued by EPA. In those documents, EPA states as follows:
EPA, Glyphosate: Interim Registration Review Decision
EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361 (Jan. 22, 2020)
- “EPA thoroughly assessed risks to humans from exposure to glyphosate from all registered uses and all routes of exposure and did not identify any risks of concern.” (p. 9)
- “EPA has thoroughly evaluated potential human health risk associated with exposure to glyphosate and determined that there are no risks to human health from the current registered uses of glyphosate and that glyphosate is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans.” (p. 10)
EPA, Glyphosate: Proposed Interim Registration Review Decision
EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-2344 (Apr. 23, 2019)
- “EPA conducted an independent evaluation of the carcinogenic potential of glyphosate and has determined that glyphosate is ‘not likely to be carcinogenic to humans.’ The agency’s cancer classification is based on a thorough weight-of-evidence review of all relevant data and is in accordance with the agency’s 2005 Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment.” (p. 7)
- “EPA did not identify any risks of concern for humans from exposure to glyphosate. In addition, the agency determined glyphosate is not likely to be carcinogenic to humans.” (p. 17)
EPA, Revised Glyphosate Issue Paper: Evaluation of Carcinogenic Potential
Off. of Pesticide Programs (Dec. 12, 2017)
- “An extensive database exists for evaluating the carcinogenic potential of glyphosate, including 63 epidemiological studies, 14 animal carcinogenicity studies, and nearly 90 genotoxicity studies for the active ingredient glyphosate. These studies were evaluated for quality and results were analyzed across studies within each line of evidence. . . . The available data at this time do not support a carcinogenic process for glyphosate.” (p. 144)
- “Overall, there is not strong support for the ‘suggestive evidence of carcinogenic potential’ cancer classification descriptor based on the weight-of-evidence, which includes the fact that even small, non-statistically significant changes observed in animal carcinogenicity and epidemiological studies were contradicted by studies of equal or higher quality. The strongest support is for ‘not likely to be carcinogenic to humans.’” (p. 143)
EPA, Glyphosate: Draft Human Health Risk Assessment
EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-0068 (Dec. 12, 2017)
- “Glyphosate exhibits low toxicity across species, durations, life stages, and routes of exposure.” (p. 2)
- EPA “reevaluated the human carcinogenic potential of glyphosate, which included a weight-of-evidence evaluation of data from animal toxicity, genotoxicity, and epidemiological studies. This evaluation was presented to the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Scientific Advisory Panel (FIFRA SAP) and was subsequently updated based on their review. The Agency concluded that glyphosate should be classified as ‘not likely to be carcinogenic to humans.’” (p. 3)
Studies Evaluated by the EPA
In reaching these conclusions, EPA reviewed thousands of studies, including analyses of human epidemiology studies, animal carcinogenicity studies, and experimental data. EPA’s recent listing and summary of studies evaluated can be found as follows:
- EPA, Glyphosate: Response to Comments on the Human Health Draft Risk Assessment 3-5 (Apr. 23, 2018) https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2019-04/documents/hed-rtc-signed.pdf (describing EPA’s process of considering toxicological studies).
- EPA, Glyphosate: Draft Human Health Risk Assessment 10-14, 29-34, 40, EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-0068 (Dec. 12, 2017), https://downloads.regulations.gov/EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-0068/content.pdf (citing studies EPA considered).
- EPA, Glyphosate – Systematic Review of Open Literature (Dec. 12, 2017), https://www.regulations.gov/document/EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-0067 (providing EPA’s assessment of open literature toxicity studies of glyphosate and glyphosate formulations)
- EPA, Summary Review of Recent Analysis of Glyphosate Use and Cancer Incidence in the Agricultural Health Study (Dec. 12, 2017), https://www.regulations.gov/document/EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-0074 (EPA evaluation of Gabriella Andreotti et al., Glyphosate Use and Cancer Incidence in the Agricultural Health Study, 110 J. Nat’l Cancer Inst. 509 (2017))
- EPA, Glyphosate: Epidemiology Review of Zhang et al. (2019) and Leon et al. (2019) publications for Response to Comments to the Proposed Interim Decision (Jan. 6, 2020), https://www.regulations.gov/document/EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-14445 (EPA evaluation of Zhang et al., Exposure to glyphosate-based herbicides and risk for non-Hodgkin lymphoma: a meta-analysis and supporting evidence, 781 Mutation Research/Reviews in Mutation Research 186 (2019) and Leon et al., Pesticide use and risk of non-Hodgkin lymphoid malignancies in agricultural cohorts from France, Norway, and the USA: a pooled analysis from the AGRICOH consortium, 48(5) Int. J. Epidemiol. 1519 (2019).
- EPA, Summary Reviews from 2016 Epidemiology Literature Review for Glyphosate (Sept. 7, 2016), https://www.regulations.gov/document/EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0385-0467 (EPA evaluation of glyphosate cancer epidemiology studies published as of September 2016)
- EPA, Updated Statistics Performed on Animal Carcinogenicity Study Date for Glyphosate (Sept. 9, 2016), https://www.regulations.gov/document/EPA-HQ-OPP-2009-0361-0075 (setting forth EPA statistical evaluation of animal cancer data adjusting for multiple comparisons)
- EPA, Glyphosate. Study summaries for genotoxicity studies (Sept. 13, 2016), https://www.regulations.gov/document/EPA-HQ-OPP-2016-0385-0098 (EPA review of glyphosate genotoxicity studies)
Studies by the U.S. National Toxicology Program
The U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) has also conducted its own studies of glyphosate and glyphosate formulations, which have almost uniformly found no evidence of genotoxicity.
- NTP, Glyphosate & Glyphosate Formulations, https://ntp.niehs.nih.gov/whatwestudy/topics/glyphosate/index.html