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Monsanto Advocate Says Roundup Is Safe Enough To Drink, Then Refuses To Drink It

03/27/2015 03:36 pm ET | Updated Mar 27, 2015

Roundup is a highly effective weed-killer that can be used during home garden maintenance, or on a massive soybean field to boost productivity. It's also been called a probable carcinogen. But according to Dr. Patrick Moore, that may not be true because "you can drink a whole quart" of the herbicide "and it won't hurt you."

Moore, an independent scientist not associated with Monsanto, recently joined French cable channel Canal+ as part of an upcoming news documentary. He advocated for the safety of glyphosate, the main ingredient in Roundup, after a recent report said the widely used chemical "probably" causes cancer.

The label, bestowed by the World Health Organization's International Agency for Research on Cancer, is the second highest risk level for possible cancer-causing agents. The "probable" category can be a bit contentious and asserts that some scientists disagree with the notion a substance causes cancer -- other agents on the WHO's list include sunshine, alcohol and wood dust.

Monsanto has fiercely tried to discredit the assessment. The company has demanded WHO retract the report, saying a growing body of scientific evidence has found glyphosate is safe when used as labeled.

Moore apparently agrees. He went so far to say that humans could even drink the chemical and be absolutely fine, and that people actually try to commit suicide with Roundup, but routinely fail due to its harmlessness.

In the middle of the interview above, a Canal+ journalist offers to go backstage to get his guest a glass of glyphosate to drink on-air, but Moore refuses and then storms off stage.

Patrick Moore: You can drink a whole quart of it and it won't hurt you.

Canal+: You want to drink some, we have some here.

PM: I'd be happy to actually. Not really, but, I know it wouldn't hurt me.

Canal+: If you say so, I have some.

PM: No, no. I'm not stupid. People try to commit suicide with it and fail regularly.

Canal+: No, no. Let's tell the truth.

PM: It's not dangerous to humans. No, it's not.

Canal+: So are you ready to drink a glass of glyphosate?

PM: No, I'm not an idiot.

Despite some reports that say Moore is a lobbyist, Monsanto told The Huffington Post in an emailed statement that he is not and has never been a paid lobbyist or employee of the company.

"Knowledgeable scientists, consumers and our farmer customers may be familiar with and confident in the safety of glyphosate, but their statements don’t make them lobbyists for our company," a spokesperson said. "Dr. Patrick Moore is one of those individuals. He agrees with the science that supports the safety of glyphosate, and is an advocate for technology and innovation. But Dr. Patrick Moore is not and never has been a paid lobbyist for Monsanto."

Moore did not immediately respond to HuffPost's request for comment.

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