A new report is casting a harsh light on food safety. Many foods we consider safe, including cereals and grains, contain trace amounts of a weed killer that has been linked to cancer. 26 of the 28 products tested in the study contained enough glyphosate to be labeled “harmful.” And most of these products are produced by major national brands.
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) focused on the main ingredient found in commercial weedkillers like Roundup.
“Products included variations of Cheerios and Quaker Oats, including Honey Nut Cheerios, Quaker Oatmeal Squares Honey Nut, and Quaker Overnight Oats,” The Daily Mail notes.
Roundup was the focal point of a trial this past summer in California brought by Dewayne Johnson. Johnson, 46, has terminal cancer brought on by his role as a groundskeeper–a job that required him to use Roundup.
“None of the products in the new report had levels above what is allowed by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),” Daily Mail adds, “but the EWG argues that customers should be concerned that any levels are being detected in products consumed by children everyday.”
EWG’s first study found glyphosate in 45 breakfast cereals from producers Quakers, Kellogg’s, and General Mills. They then shifted their emphasis to Quaker Oats and Cheerios, due to their popularity.
The study was conducted on cereal bought in California and in Washington D.C. All 28 samples contained glyphosate. 26 of the were in the dangerous level.
“The EPA caps glyphosate tolerance at 5.0 parts per million (ppm),” DM writes. “But the EWG’s health benchmark is much more conservative and says any level greater than 160 parts per billion (ppb) is not safe.”
The highest level was found in Quaker Oatmeal Squares Honey Nut, which showed 2,837 ppb.
“[The] EWG report artificially creates a ‘safe level’ for glyphosate that is detached from those that have been established by responsible regulatory bodies in an effort to grab headlines,” Quaker said in a statement.
“We believe EWG’s approach is invalid, and we stand behind our statement that the Quaker products tested by EWG are safe.”