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Study: Weed killer linked to cancer found in kids' cereal, oatmeal

(WFLA) - A leading research group claims harmful levels of a weed killer linked to cancer are showing up in foods and cereals marketed to children.

An analysis by the non-profit Environmental Working Group (EWG) found trace amounts of glyphosate in a number of products including Cheerios and Quaker Oats granola bars.

Scientists tested 29 products and found that almost three-quarters of the samples they tested contained higher levels of glyphosate than deemed safe, according to the report. 

“That does not mean, ‘Stop eating this bowl of Cheerios right now!’ But then when you think about how people eat these oats,” Olga Naidenko, senior science adviser at EWG told Mother Jones. "That’s when those numbers start to come into concern.”

Glyphosate, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup, is the most widely used herbicide in the country due to the widespread adoption of GMOs. According to the IARC, the herbicide has additional chemical ingredients that are "probably carcinogenic to humans."

Last Friday, a groundskeeper was awarded $289 million in damages after a jury found glyphosate was a significant cause of his terminal cancer. 

Monsanto (which is now owned by Bayer) said on Monday it planned to challenge the verdict on the grounds that the judge should have barred scientific evidence.

"More than 800 scientific studies, the US EPA, the National Institutes of Health and regulators around the world have concluded that glyphosate is safe for use and does not cause cancer," said a company representative. 

The full list of products tested and results from the EWG is available below:

Potentially unsafe levels of glyphosate 

  • Back to Nature Classic Granola
  • Barbara's Multigrain Spoonfuls, Original, Cereal
  • Bob's Red Mill Steel Cut Oats
  • Cheerios Toasted Whole Grain Oat Cereal
  • Giant Instant Oatmeal Original Flavor
  • Great Value Original Instant Oatmeal
  • Kellogg’s Cracklin’ Oat Bran oat cereal
  • Lucky Charms (without marshmallows)
  • Market Pantry Instant Oatmeal, Strawberries & Cream
  • Nature Valley Crunchy Granola Bars, Oats 'n Honey
  • Nature Valley Granola Protein Oats 'n Honey
  • Quaker Dinosaur Eggs, Brown Sugar, Instant Oatmeal
  • Quaker Old Fashioned Oats
  • Quaker Simply Granola Oats, Honey, Raisin and Almonds
  • Quaker Steel Cut Oats
  • Umpqua Oats, Maple Pecan

Safe levels of glyphosate 

  • Back to Nature Banana Walnut Granola Clusters
  • Bob's Red Mill Organic Old Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • Kellogg’s Nutrigrain Soft Baked Breakfast Bars, Strawberry
  • KIND Vanilla, Blueberry Clusters with Flax Seeds
  • Nature's Path Organic Old Fashioned Organic Oats
  • Whole Foods Bulk Bin conventional rolled oats

No glyphosate detected

  • 365 Organic Old-Fashioned Rolled Oats
  • Cascadian Farm Organic Harvest Berry, granola bar
  • Kashi Heart to Heart Organic Honey Toasted cereal
  • Nature's Path Organic Honey Almond granola
  • Simple Truth Organic Instant Oatmeal, Original

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