Bayer Statement on Vietnam decision to ban glyphosate
Core Bayer Statement:
Bayer respects and shares in the Government of Vietnam’s interest to protect farmers and consumers alike. Unfortunately, today’s decision banning glyphosate will not help to improve food security, safety or sustainability in the country. Importantly, Bayer is not aware of any new scientific assessment undertaken by the Government of Vietnam on which the decision is based. Reportedly, it was driven by developments in litigation taking place in the United States. This litigation does not change the overwhelming weight of over four decades of extensive science and the conclusions of regulators worldwide that support the safety of glyphosate-based herbicide products.
Glyphosate-based products have been on the market around the world for more than 40 years and are among the most thoroughly studied products of their kind. Hundreds of studies submitted to regulators, as well as peer-reviewed publications, show that these products can be used safely. Constant multi-year ongoing reviews by regulatory and scientific bodies also demonstrate that glyphosate is not carcinogenic. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) and regulatory authorities in Canada, Japan, Australia, Korea, Brazil, and elsewhere routinely review all approved pesticide products and have consistently reaffirmed that glyphosate is not carcinogenic. As Health Canada noted in a very recent statement, ‘no pesticide regulatory authority in the world currently considers glyphosate to be a cancer risk to humans at the levels at which humans are currently exposed’.
We have seen the unfortunate impact of denying farmers access to such an essential tool. Sri Lanka had imposed a glyphosate ban in 2015. However, the ban was reversed on tea and rubber in 2018 after local farmers became vocal about the huge economic impact and irreparable harm to their businesses. Vietnam’s farmers should be spared this experience and should be able to use the same approved tools that farmers worldwide continue to benefit from.
Bayer shares Prime Minister Nguyen Xuan Phuc’s vision for Vietnam’s agriculture sector and supports his calls for scientific and technological advances to drive sustainable economic growth. Bayer will continue to collaborate with the government and invest in the agricultural innovation that will support Vietnam’s farmers, improve rural economic development and protect the environment.
Farmers worldwide face many challenges such as a rapidly changing climate and lack of resources to produce healthy crops. Overcoming these difficult challenges requires agricultural innovations such as digital farming technologies, sustainability practices, high performing seeds and crop protection tools like glyphosate.
Vietnam's farmers have safely used glyphosate for decades to produce essential crops including coffee, tropical fruit, tea and rubber. This has allowed farmers to improve their livelihoods and meet community expectations of safe, affordable food that is produced sustainably.
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