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France vows to outlaw Monsanto's glyphosate by 2018 amid fears herbicide is destroying biodiversity, causing mass honeybee die-offs


(NaturalNews) The EU is making international headlines yet again, but this time for their mandated 18-month extension of the license for the use of glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto's Roundup, which is used widely in French agriculture. The use of glyphosate in French farming and wine agricultural practices was supposed to cease entirely by June 30, 2016, but after the EU Standing Environmental Committee failed to come to an agreement on whether or not to enforce a ban, they extended the deadline by an additional 18 months.

Roundup has been widely used across France for the past two decades, serving as an effective pesticide to facilitate the growth of the country's farming and wine industries. Even though France consistently voted against the EU's extension due to complaints filed by farming and wine industry representatives, the opposition expressed by the nation's federal government was ignored.

Studies conducted by the World Health Organization "found that the herbicide solution [Roundup] was 'probably carcinogenic to humans,'" prompting France to implement federal regulations to outlaw the increasingly harmful pesticide.

Segolene Royal, the French Minister for Ecology, voiced her displeasure about the extension, and claimed that France remains "determined to ban the use of glyphosate in France by January 1, 2018."

Aside from the obvious potential danger to human health, Royal discussed glyphosate's impact on the country's biodiversity, particularly the increasing disappearance of honeybee populations.

In September 2014, Natural News reported on the numerous detrimental effects glyphosate has on honeybees and other natural pollinators. In a study published by the Journal of Experimental Biology, researchers discovered "both chronic and acute effects in honeybees exposed to Roundup at real-life levels."

In the study, researchers from the University of Buenos Aires in Argentina observed how trace levels of glyphosate affected honeybees' foraging ability and overall memory retention. To no one's surprise, they "found a reduced sensitivity to sucrose and learning performance for the groups chronically exposed to GLY [glyphosate] concentrations within the range of recommended doses."

Researchers found dramatic reductions in memory retention of honeybees exposed to Roundup, as well as the presence of "tainted nectar" in hives, putting the livelihood of the entire colony in danger. According to Natural News, "the distribution of Roundup via nectar did have a cumulative effect on the entire hive's ability to function, which includes foraging."

The symptoms reported by the Journal of Experimental Biology's study are not too dissimilar to those induced by Colony Collapse Disorder, or CCD, the main culprit behind recent honeybee population decline. Neonicotinoids, one of the main pesticides believed to be causing widespread cases of CCD, have been known to cause "behavioral disruptions such as disorientation, reduced foraging, impaired memory and learning, and shifts in communication behaviors," in honeybee populations.

Furthermore, an article published by Mother Earth News in 2010, directly linked the use of Roundup pesticides to the development of CCD. Terrence Ingram, a practicing beekeeper for 55 years, "explained how, for years, he observed entire bee colonies collapsing almost immediately after nearby fields were sprayed with Roundup."

Like neonicotinoids, glyphosate's harmful effects on honeybee populations are indisputable. Honeybees continue to die off at alarming rates, with little to no federal regulation to protect them. What's worse is it looks like Monsanto has found a way to influence the EU now as they have U.S. regulators, in hopes of keeping their toxic herbicides in use in French farming industries. Hopefully, the French government will find a way to make sure that when the new 18-month extension on the ban of glyphosate expires, it will finally expire for good.






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