The European Commission (EC) is proposing a five-year extension to the usage license for the herbicide glyphosate after its previous suggestion of a 10-year extension fell through.
The EU failed to pass a vote on the herbicide that has been claimed to cause cancer on 25 October, marking a second time in the month it could not reach on agreement on the matter, Reuters wrote on 27 October.
The European bloc had to reach a decision on glyphosate by the end of the year and the EC’s current five-year extension was due to be voted on 9 November.
Glyphosate is the main ingredient in Monsanto’s Roundup weed killer and European countries have been wrestling with what to do about it since March 2015, when the World Health Organization (WHO) determined glyphosate was a probable cause of cancer.
An 18-month license extension was passed by the EU in June 2016 pending further scientific study that was carried out by the European Chemical Agency, which in March determined there was no evidence linking glyphosate to cancer in humans.
However, the European Parliament called on 24 October for glyphosate to be phased out over the next five years with an immediate ban on consumer sales and use in public spaces, wrote Reuters.
France – which opposed the EC’s original 10-year extension plan – has said it could accept a four-year extension, casting doubt on the 9 November vote’s ability to reach a solution.