Nestle Steps Up Testing, Weedkiller Found in Coffee Beans
Roaster notifies suppliers of Indonesian, Brazilian coffee
Some green coffee has residue levels close to regulatory limit
Nestle SA is increasing checks on the coffee it buys, after recent tests showed beans from some countries had levels of the weedkiller glyphosate that are close to a regulatory limit.
The world’s largest coffee roaster has informed suppliers of Indonesian and certain Brazilian beans of the new procedures, which go into effect starting Oct. 1, according to memos seen by Bloomberg. The company says the new measures “should be temporary” until producing countries correct the application of glyphosate.
The move comes at a time when many countries have either banned or are seeking to prohibit the use of glyphosate, used in the Roundup weedkiller. Bayer AG, which spent $63 billion buying the product’s maker, Monsanto, is now facing billions of dollars worth of lawsuits claiming it causes cancer.
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[.] Nestle’s request is just one indicator of a conflict arising between companies that import large quantities of agricultural commodities and the farmers that grow them, as more countries ban or severely limit the use of Roundup.
“We actively monitor chemical residues, including glyphosate, in the green coffee that we purchase,” Switzerland-based Nestle said in a statement. “This monitoring program has shown that in some green coffee lots chemical residue levels are close to limits defined by regulations. We are reinforcing our controls working with suppliers to ensure that our green coffee continues to meet regulations all around the world.”
[.] Europe has some of the most strict standards on glyphosate levels, while Australia and Malaysia also have relatively high limits. That’s compared to the US, where restrictions on glyphosate levels in food are relatively lenient.
Nestle said it is “working with growers” to reduce their reliance on glyphosate: “Our agronomists will continue to work with coffee farmers to help them improve their weed management practices, including the appropriate use of herbicides and adoption of other weeding methods.”
Meanwhile, a manager at one Brazilian growing cooperative said his organization is struggling to help members reduce glyphosate levels to help meet European standards. (ZeroHedge)
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