Glyphosate Restrictions – Asia, India, Russia


Sri Lanka

The rapid response from chemical manufacturers like Monsanto makes the banning of pesticides a rocky political road:

In March, 2014, concerned that glyphosate was linked to a kidney disease killing agricultural workers, the President of Sri Lanka, Mahinda Rajapaksa, ordered a ban on the chemical, the active ingredient in Monsanto’s top-selling herbicide Roundup.

Monsanto, other chemical companies and Sri Lankan officials connected to the pesticide industry immediately began contesting the decision, attempting to cast doubt on its scientific basis. Less than a month later, the government placed the glyphosate ban on hold.

In 2014 studies by Dr. Channa Sudath Jayasumana, clearly linked glyphosate to the development of the deadly chronic kidney disease (CKDu). In March 2015, the International Agency for Research into Cancer (World Health Organisation) explosively declared that glyphosate is a “probable human carcinogen.”

In May 2015, with the election of a new President, Maithripala Sirisena, an immediate and comprehensive ban on glyphosate was again announced, including a halt to the distribution of already imported supplies. More information here and here. ,

The Sunday Times Sri Lanka November 1, 2015 noted that while licences for sale or the possession of the pesticide were now revoked, there seemed no provision to send back the stocks already imported. They also noted that a few days before the ban, 13 containers full had been released into the country before the ban and that 200,000L were available within the country and they believe it was highly likely these would be marketed illegally.

2016 September: Controversially, the Plantations Minister, Navin Dissanayake, without political authority, told a grouping of tea farm managers, the Sri Lanka’s Planters’ Association, that the ban would be relaxed. This was endlessly promulgated in the media in a style reminiscent of propaganda written by Monsanto. The political jousting is discussed more fully here.


Though a number of sites repeat the claim that India has banned glyphosate (for example) I can find no evidence for this.

In fact, dozens of pesticides which have been banned or restricted in some countries (particularly the European Union) are in use in India. In a way we have come to expect, an ‘expert’ committee headed by C.D. Mayee set up by the Central government to examine the matter, have recommended continued use of the pesticides in most cases. It was found, for instance, that no link could be found between endosulfan and the health effects among those exposed to the pesticide in Kasaragod district. Laughable. In some cases, they recommended that they be allowed for restricted use. As an example, pesticides in use in Kerala include Carbaryl, Malathion, Acephate, Dimethoate, Chlorpyrifos, Lindane, Quinalphos, Phosphomidon, Carbandizm, Captan, Tridamorph, Practilachlor, 2.4–D and Glyphosate.


In December 2015, Russian President Vladimir Putin told the Russian Parliament that Russia should become the world’s largest supplier of organic foods.

In June 2016 Russia’s State Duma adopted a total ban on the cultivation and breeding in Russia of genetically modified (GM) plants and animals, except for scientific research purposes. In addition, it is also illegal to import GMOs from abroad, with the exception of genetically altered organisms and materials used for expertise and research.

And in December 27 2016, Russia officially proposed clear GMO labeling on all food products that contain genetically modified ingredients in the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEC), starting in 2017.

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