'Till Death Do Us Part
I have been intending to write a blog entry or a Facebook post in support of glyphosate for some time now.
I have procrastinated thus far because such a post, if it is going to carry any clout with those that already support a ban and have the power to challenge their views, would need to be robust, well researched (erm, googled) and written in a manner that is not prejorative of the very audience that I would be trying to reach (convert).
Alas, I don't have the time or the energy to do all of that at the moment so this short commentary will have to do.
In this respect, until information comes along that proves otherwise, I am happy to stake my reputation in support of the continued use of glyphosate in agriculture, forestry, domestic situations and anywhere else where cost effective weed control is necessary.
I reached this position by spending quite a considerable amount of time in the past looking for evidence on the internet to justify a ban. At that time, I could not find enough accumulated scientific evidence to conclusively suggest that a ban was necessary or even appropriate from a precautionary perspective.
Some of the information that I found that favoured a ban was not scientific and, while perhaps not entirely scaremongering, appeared to approach the subject from the initial position that Monsanto is evil and that the chemical itself has already been proven to cause ill effects on both the environment and on human health. As a result, I question its veracity.
If this was the robust and well researched article that I mentioned above, then I would need to write many hundreds of words on the subject and, at the very least, make reference to the Soil Association's recent campaign against glyphosate because of its presence in bread.
Unfortunately, although the presence of glyphosate in foodstuffs is something that I think does need discussing in a balanced manner, this is not going to be that thesis.
Instead, I will just leave the subject for now by posting this link to an article that appeared in support of glyphosate in the Scottish Farmer today. It lists some useful Twitter accounts for those who wish to make the case against a ban to EU President Juncker and colleagues.
Considering how so much disinformation about glyphosate is disseminated across the internet, I think it would be good for glyphosate's supporters to speak up.
Perhaps one mythical day I will feel up to the task of writing about glyphosate at length.
Perhaps I will even write about about those other two bete noir of the agricultural world: GM crops and neonicotinoids, both of which are seldom subject to a balanced discussion on the internet (I'm looking at you Facebook) and where a measured new regulatory approach would be better than the outright ban proposed by some (FYI: the Scottish Government has - wrongly in my opinion - already stated that GMOs will not be produced in Scotland).
For the time being, I will leave you with a picture of a sign that I had made-up for the car park of the livestock market in Dingwall. It cost a few hundred Pounds to procure the sign and the annual rental is around £250 on top of that, so I am hopeful that it will generate some sales from customers of the mart (i.e. farmers, estate managers, landowner and so on).
It's a shame that the sign is sandwiched between those of two funeral directors!
Perhaps it will help to bring some urgency to the potential client's tree planting plans ("Hmmm, must get that will sorted and make arrangements for the headstone........ oh, yes, and plant some trees before I go....").
Then again, perhaps not.