NGOs are warning Italy that it should not extend a grace period and ensure that pesticides containing glyphosate do not contain the toxic co-formulant POE-tallowamine.
The public health NGOs claim that Rome is circumnavigating the grace period with a November 2016 Decree and consider “doubtful” that an extension of authorisations on a member state level is possible when there are concerns for public health.
On 29 June 2016, the European Commission decided to extend the licence of glyphosate for another 18 months until the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) in Helsinki issues its own scientific assessment of the substance.
With the support of member states, the Commission also set some conditions on the approval of glyphosate. One of them was for the member states to ensure that plant protection products (PPP) containing glyphosate do not contain the co-formulant POE-tallowamine.
According to the European Commission, member states should adjust their national legislation to make sure that pesticides containing glyphosate do not contain POE-tallowamine.
For the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the co-formulant POE-tallowamine is extremely toxic and a danger to public health.
A meeting is scheduled in Rome on 16 February to discuss the issue with the Italian government.