Consumer chatter says Costco has reportedly pulled Monsanto’s top-selling weed killer Roundup from its store shelves nationwide and will no longer sell the controversial product in the future.
The news comes days after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) released a widely anticipated Toxicological Profile for Glyphosate that not only links Roundup’s active ingredient glyphosate to cancer but connects it to a multitude of other damaging health effects as well.
Costco’s reported Roundup removal may be connected to pressure from consumers and activists, who have long pressured public and private sector officials to ban its use.
According to Big Think, Moms Across America founder Zen Honeycutt, who petitioned Costco to stop selling Roundup, wrote on her blog:
“I called the headquarters, and after two days of messages and calls, I did finally confirm with three people that Costco was not ordering Roundup or any glyphosate-based herbicides for the incoming spring shipments. They would not be selling it in any stores, all across America.”
Ms. Honeycutt notes that Costco traditionally does not issue press releases discussing items they have discontinued, so there is no official confirmation yet. She added that one Costco employee she spoke with said the company had looked into organic alternatives to Roundup and “were happy with the results,” and the other employees mentioned the landmark Dewayne Johnson lawsuit, which ended with a California jury awarding $289 million to a terminally ill groundskeeper allegedly sickened by years of Roundup use. That award was later lowered to $78 million.
The Moms Across America organization is also pressuring other big retailers that stock Roundup to follow Costco’s lead.
“We call on Home Depot and Lowe’s today to step up as Costco has to protect us, your customers, and stop selling Roundup (and all glyphosate herbicides) now, due to its carcinogenic effects and lack of labeling,” the petition states. “Everyone deserves to know! These products should not be sold to the public!”
The ATSDR report linked glyphosate to an increased risk of non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (NHL) and multiple myeloma. The report also found glyphosate’s association with NHL is stronger when data is adjusted for longer use of the herbicide and for a longer time from exposure for cancer to develop.
Those findings support the conclusions of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC), the unit of the United Nations that in 2015 classified glyphosate as a probable carcinogen. However, the ATSDR report provides even more evidence of the glyphosate-cancer link, as well as adverse effects on reproduction, child development, and organ toxicity.
Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry
Moms Across America