If Monsanto's Roundup herbicide were actually 'safer than table salt' as they once advertised, the consumption of GM food wouldn't be nearly as controversial. The truth, however, is that virtually all GM food today contains residues of this toxic chemical, which disproves that GM and non-GM foods are 'substantially equivalent," which is the primary doctrinal justification behind why GM foods are not properly safety tested and millions in this country eating them are living and breathing guinea pigs.

There was a time when Monsanto claimed their patented herbicide Roundup was "safer than table salt" and "practically nontoxic," and aggressively marketed this message until 1996, when they were ordered by Dennis C. Vacco, the Attorney General of New York, to pull the ads.[1]

Fast forward 15 years, after millions of farmers around the world bought into the false advertising and who, as a result, are now driving the production and use of several hundred million pounds of the chemical annually, Roundup herbicide is beginning to look eerily like Monsanto's Agent Orange 2.0.

Indeed, within the scientific community and educated public alike, there is a growing awareness that Roundup herbicide, and its primary ingredient glyphosate, is actually a broad spectrum biocide, in the etymological sense of the word: "bio" (life) and "cide" (kill) - that is, it broadly, without discrimination kills living things, not just plants. Moreover, it does not rapidly biodegrade as widely claimed, and exceedingly small amounts of this chemical - in concentration ranges found in recently sampled rain, air, groundwater, and human urine samples - have DNA-damaging and cancer cell proliferation stimulating effects.

You don't have to look very far to find research documenting its extreme and wide-ranging toxicity. Anyone with a smart phone can now access the accumulating body of experimental and epidemiological research freely available on the National Library of Medicine's citation database MEDLINE, proving that glyphosate-based agrichemicals have been linked to over 40 health conditions, from Parkinson's to Leukemia, and over two dozen modes of toxicity, from causing damage to the DNA to disrupting hormone receptors, from suppressing the immune system to damaging neurons. To view all 26 adverse physiological actions visit our open access, MEDLINE-derived Glyphosate Formulation research page.

Once the public begin to let the reality of Roundup's parts-per-trillion toxicity sink in, then another realization naturally follows. The vast majority of GM crops are designed to survive chemical poisoning with Roundup. So-called 'Roundup ready' or 'glyphosate-resistant' plants are sprayed with this chemical, ensuring they are contaminated with toxic residues. This means that the potentially endless, impossible to resolve debate over whether GM transgenes inserted into food and feed crops produce 'allergenic' or 'potentially toxic' proteins only scratches the surface of the problem, acting like a smokescreen distracting from the more obvious problems associated with the clear and present threat of glyphosate/Roundup toxicity.

Essentially, if you are eating anything that is not explicitly labeled non-GMO or USDA certified organic (and there are reasons to doubt the veracity of this logo), you are being exposed to Roundup and its toxic metabolites. And when we say 'exposed' we are using a euphemism for poisoned. This also means that the primary doctrinal justification for not labeling, adequately safety testing, and regulating GM foods, namely, the view that they are 'substantially equivalent,' no longer holds any water. Roundup poisoned food is never equivalent to Roundup-free food.

Comment: Read the following article for the definition of 'substantially equivalent' in regards to GMO technology:

The GMO Report: Substantial Equivalence - anything but equivalent or substantial
Substantial equivalence. When looking at these two words many come away with the impression that they signify fairness, safety and adequate disclosure to consumers regarding the products those words are attached to. However, regarding the marketing of transgenic foods specifically genetically modified organisms in our food that is anything but the case. I think it is crucial that consumers are aware of what is in their food and how it may affect them and their children in order for them to be able to make informed decisions about what goes into their bodies. This knowledge is essential as a preventative measure to maintaining health and also regarding informing consumers about any other effects what they buy may have on the enviroment. Therefore, in discussing substantial equivalence in regards to GMOs and the underlayer of collusion involved in pushing them into the world I think it important to begin at the beginning.

This is the standard definition of "substantial equivalence":
"Substantial equivalence is a concept developed by OECD in 1991 that maintains that a novel food should be considered the same as a conventional food if it demonstrates the same characteristics and composition as the conventional food."
This concept was pushed in regards to GMOs by the FAO and the WHO in the early 1990s. Its intent was the stripping away of years of testing of so called "novel" foods which can be prohibitively expensive and time consuming and therefore would have affected the profits of companies like Monsanto that have a virtual stranglehold on the FDA, USDA, and other regulatory agencies and governments that have afforded them special treatment in allowing them to use this planet and its species as one huge science experiment. The residual effects of applying these two words to GMOs and in allowing them to be foisted upon the world with little to no adequate testing already negates the validity of applying the substantial equivalence label to them.

In order to drive momentum towards mass awareness of Roundup and Roundup-Ready agriculture toxicity, we are offering a free PDF download of our accumulated research on the topic to be shared far and wide. It is a 100% peer-reviewed and published research document, with hyperlinks back to the original citation location on the National Library of Medicine's MEDLINE. Please download it here today:

For additional research and articles on the dangers associated with GMO food, visit our research page on the topic: Health Guide: GMO Research


[1] The New York Times, Monsanto recruits the horticulturist of the San Diego Zoo to pitch its popular herbicide, May 29, 1997

About the author

Sayer Ji is an author, researcher, lecturer, and advisory board member of the National Health Federation.

He founded in 2008 in order to provide the world an open access, evidence-based resource supporting natural and integrative modalities. It is internationally recognized as the largest and most widely referenced health resource of its kind.