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Chinese citizens go to court to get full disclosure of old Monsanto glyphosate safety tests

Date Added to website 7th November 2015

Chinese citizens go to court to get full disclosure of old Monsanto glyphosate safety tests

Chinese citizens are trying -- not for the first time -- to obtain full disclosure of the research documents used in 1988 by Monsanto as part of its application for the registration and approval of glyphosate / Roundup leading to its use in the Chinese market. Subsequently, of course, China became the world's leading producer of glyphosate. 

The plaintiffs claim that the Monsanto research was fraudulent and that the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture connived in an ongoing cover-up by refusing to release the Monsanto documents for full independent scrutiny before giving its approvals.

See also our Open Letter to the People of China:

and our Special Report on the glyphosate / cancer link:

One day, the cover-ups will have to stop, and the truth will be out in the open. When that happens, it will signal the end for glyphosate.

Press Release: Beijing residents once again initiate administrative litigation against the Ministry of Agriculture

Posted on behalf of Beijing food safety volunteers 2015-10-22

On Oct. 15, 2015, Yang Xiao-lu, Li Xiang-zhen, Tian Xiang-ping, three Beijing residents, as the plaintiffs, again submitted their suit against the Ministry of Agriculture to the Beijing 3rd intermediate court. The court immediately accepted the suit and issued receipt of the suit materials to the three plaintiffs.

The purpose of this suit against the Ministry of Agriculture is because they resist the principles and specific stipulations of Article 26, Article 9, Article 14, Article 23 of the "PRC Governmental Information Disclosure Regulation", and Article 10 of the "Pesticide Administration Regulation". The Ministry of Agriculture uses the excuse "involves trade secrets and individual privacy" to resist disclosure of scanned copies of the Monsanto documents, without deletions or revisions, "per the form requested by the applicant", submitted by Monsanto in 1988 for the Pesticide Registration of Roundup herbicide in China. The documents claim that glyphosate "acute toxicity tests via oral administration is low; results of sub-chronic and chronic toxicity tests indicate that the toxicity of this product is rather low; metabolic test indicates that glyphosate is not accumulative within the body and discharges quickly from the body; result of 'carcinogenic and mutagenic and teratogenicity' tests indicate that this product is not carcinogenic, not mutagenic and not teratogenic; ADI is 0.1mg/kg bw".

Our previous suit, submitted on Sept. 4, 2014, also was because the Ministry of Agriculture used "involves trade secrets, individual privacy" as excuse to refuse disclosure of the scanned copy and Chinese translation of the "glyphosate herbicide Roundup toxicology test report issued by the American Younger Laboratories on Dec. 23, 1985". Our payment of the formal case establishment fee was paid on Jan. 27, 2015. Later on, the court added Monsanto as a "third party concerned", making the case a foreign party involving case. Therefore as the preparation time before the date of the hearing was rather long, the time of the hearing is no longer restricted by the stipulations of preparation time for domestic cases. The hearing of this case is expected to be very soon. The defendant and the plaintiff have both submitted their evidence materials and directory to the court. The case is just waiting for Monsanto, the 3rd party concerned, to submit their final evidence material to the court. The court can then proceed with hearing of the case.

To all government information disclosure applications, requesting to disclose the toxicology test reports submitted by Monsanto and other pesticide companies when they applied for Pesticide Registration, the Ministry of Agriculture has now adopted the policy of first sending a letter to Monsanto and the other pesticide companies, inquiring if such toxicology test reports involve "trade secrets". The Ministry also inquires if they will agree to disclose such toxicology test reports. After they respond stating that such toxicology test reports do involve their "trade secrets", and they refuse disclosure, the Ministry of Agriculture then responds to the applicants that they refuse to disclose, or use other words refusing disclosure.

This not only violates the principle and specific provisions of national law specifying that that "public interest is more important than 'trade secrets'" (refer to Article 10 of "Pesticide Administration Regulation", Article 9, Article 14 and Article 23 of "PRC Government Information Disclosure Regulation"), but also provides illegal businesses room and shelter to use their 'trade secrets" improperly for commercial use, profit by harming Chinese people's food safety, life and health. This obviously is a serious crime of malfeasance!

The Ministry of Agriculture has already placed the business interests of Monsanto and other pesticide companies as their highest principles, unconditionally enabling them to take precedence over state laws and the Ministry's duties to maintain the interest of food safety for over a billion Chinese people.

Furthermore, once the "test report" submitted by Monsanto shows problems such as, "using false samples, carry out falsified tests, make false safety conclusions", then refusing to disclose such "test reports" will forever hide and seal Monsanto fraud crime evidence, cheating the Chinese government and cheating the Chinese people. Shall the people never be able to pursue the legal responsibility of Monsanto and Ministry of Agricultural officials colluding with them!?

We therefore initiate this administrative prosecution to request back fairness and justice!


Beijing residents: Yang Xiao-lu, Li Xiang-zhen, Tian Xiang-ping

Oct. 19, 2015