"Cancer-Causing" Chemical Found In Popular Cereals And Granola Bars

According to a new study from the Environmental Working Group.
"Cancer-Causing" Chemical Found In Popular Cereals And Granola Bars

A new study from the Environmental Working Group (EWG) states that "major food companies like General Mills continue to sell popular children’s breakfast cereals and other foods contaminated with troubling levels of glyphosate, the cancer-causing ingredient in the herbicide Roundup."

Evidence tying the consumption of glyphosate with cancer risk continues to mount. A separate study published in February of this year found that glyphosate can increase a consumer's chance of developing cancer by 41%, according to CNN.

Roundup, "produced by Bayer-Monsanto, was detected in all 21 oat-based cereal and snack products sampled in a new round of testing commissioned by the Environmental Working Group," the authors of the latest study write in its summary, published today.

"All but four products contained levels of glyphosate higher than what EWG scientists consider protective for children’s health with a sufficient margin of safety."

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The breakfast products with the highest levels of glyphosate were Honey Nut Cheerios Medley Crunch (833 parts per billion – ppb) and Cheerios (729 ppb). Other products with detectable levels of glyphosate were select Nature Valley bars and Fiber One Oatmeal Raisin soft-baked cookies.

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For context, "the EWG children’s health benchmark is 160 ppb."

"The only way to quickly remove this cancer-causing weedkiller from foods marketed to children is for companies like General Mills and Quaker to use oats from farmers who do not use glyphosate as a desiccant," the study concludes.

The World Health Organization, the authors note, classifies glyphosate as "probably carcinogenic." Meanwhile, "since last August, three California juries have awarded more than $2.2 billion total in three separate verdicts against Bayer-Monsanto over claims that Roundup caused cancer."

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The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), for its part, maintains "that there are no risks to public health when glyphosate is used in accordance with its current label and that glyphosate is not a carcinogen," according to a statement released in April.

The EWG advocates for the elimination of glyphosate from consumer goods. You can read its whole study summary here. This page also details the specific products with detectable levels of glyphosate. You can read coverage of the findings from CBS here.