Let’s be clear. It is trace amounts of Round-Up Weed Killer that have been found in the breakfast cereals. And breakfast cereals are processed foods. So this is not new news because as we have previously reported, earlier studies have found pesticides in many types of processed foods sold in U.S. grocery stores. For those consumers who eat commercially processed foods it is pretty hard to avoid at this point. Even Big Food gets that: “Most crops grown in fields use some form of pesticides and trace amounts are found in the majority of food we all eat.” -General Mills
The levels uncovered in the breakfast cereals are below what the EPA regards as “safe”. And what level of ingesting pesticides each day is “safe” is still being debated even among scientists. But given the mounting body of research linking pesticides to myriad of serious health conditions (and the cumulative and synergistic effects when we ingest pesticides along with all the other chemicals of concern each day), for children, pregnant women, men and women planning on having children, and those with serious chronic health conditions, it might be a better bet to minimize exposure and avoid ingesting foods containing glyphosate weed killer whenever possible by choosing organic options.
Regardless of whether you think you should be concerned or not, the unknown long-term effects of these trace amounts, especially when children are exposed, have some experts urging parents to be vigilant.
“I think it’s very important for people to realize how widespread exposure to glyphosate is. There are things in the foods that they purchase that aren’t listed on the label and that they probably don’t want to be giving to their children.”
-Dr. Sarah Evans, assistant professor, Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Children’s Environmental Health Center
Here is an overview of the report and findings:
Report: Dozens More Breakfast Foods Test Positive For Trace Amounts Of Weed Killer
(CNN) — Dozens of common breakfast cereals and snack bars have trace amounts of a controversial herbicide found in the weed killer Roundup, according to a report released today by an environmental advocacy group.
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) found that 26 of the 28 products it tested had levels of Roundup’s main ingredient, glyphosate, that were “higher than what EWG scientists consider protective of children’s health.” An earlier report found similar results in over thirty oat-based foods.
Manufacturers say their products are safe, but the EWG report argues that the vast majority of foods tested — such as Honey Nut Cheerios and Quaker Simply Granola Oats — have glyphosate levels that might pose a cancer risk with long-term consumption.
None of the foods violated EPA limits on the herbicide, but the EWG uses a far more conservative health benchmark. California’s proposed glyphosate limit, which would be the most restrictive in the country, still allows for glyphosate levels that are over a hundred times higher than the EWG’s threshold.
The environmental group says its lower threshold includes an added buffer for children, as “exposure during early life can have more significant effects on development later in life,” according to Dr. Alexis Temkin, the lead scientist on EWG report…