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Letter: Roundup is poison

Letters to the editor
By Letters to the editor
July 15th, 2023

To The Editor:

The active ingredient in Roundup is glyphosate.  It’s been called the ‘DDT of this century’, and it is. Vancouver, Quebec and Montreal have banned the use of glyphosate as well as other cities and  countries around the world.  This  includes Mexico, Germany and France.  And to note,  Bayer of Germany, was the company that bought out Monsanto, the owner of Roundup.

Glyphosate could have been ‘safe’ if it weren’t for it’s off target effects, as like our medicine usually has side effects.  Its mechanism of action is to shut down the shikimate pathway in plants which makes some of the essential amino acids, the building blocks of protein.  Without these amino acids to make proteins, the plant dies. 

Human cells do not contain the shikimate pathway, hence ‘safe’ for humans. This pathway only exists in plants, and in fungi and bacteria that live in the soil and in our intestinal tract. 

The fungi, bacteria and other microbes in the soil make nutrients available to plant roots, which makes them strong, healthy and nutrient dense, to resist  pests and disease naturally.  The beneficial microbes in our gut do the same for us and  determines human health. Glyphosate, being an antibiotic, as stated on the original patent, is antimicrobial, which means that it kills the beneficial microbes in the soil and in our gut. 

Farmers use glyphosate as a weed killer, and a drying agent for grains and beans just before  harvest. Then there are GMO seeds and produce, that are designed to survive the direct chemical spray of this toxic chemical. Glyphosate can be absorbed through the leaves of these plants, so it can’t be washed off. 

We are all consuming residues of glyphosate in our food.  It seems to be in almost everything, wine, honey, boxed cereal, tampons and cotton sheets. GMO produce is in our grocery stores un-labelled. 

Glyphosate causes organ damage in livestock, kidney disease in agricultural workers, disrupts hormones and reproduction, has neurological impacts on children, and causes cancer. 

It is able to break open the tight junctions in our gut membrane as well as other membranes, such as  the kidney tubules, blood vessels and the blood brain barrier.  In the intestinal tract, some of the contents there are able to seep through the gut barrier and into the blood stream. Each time this happens, the immune system gets turned on which causes chronic inflammation, of said to be the root cause of disease. Glyphosate harms bees, butterflies, deer and other wildlife.   

Currently there are class action lawsuits in Canada and the United States against Bayer, for the toxic effects of glyphosate by home gardeners, farmworkers and landscapers.  It would be best to contact the head office of your grocery store to label GMO produce and to email the city, mayor and council to ban the use of Roundup.   

We all need to find natural alternatives for everything we do.  

Sandy Boates, Vernon, BC


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