Glyphosate is a herbicide used to control weeds in agriculture, public and industrial areas, and in home gardens. Agricultural products – including products such as weed killers and bug sprays for use in the home and garden – are required by Australian law to meet specific criteria regarding safety for people and the environment. Glyphosate has been registered for use in Australia for over 40 years. There are now around 500 glyphosate products registered by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA).
The APVMA assesses the safety of glyphosate products, and registered products are considered safe to use when the instructions on the label are followed.
Glyphosate has also been assessed by other government regulators and independent scientists around the world. These assessments consistently found that glyphosate has low toxicity for humans, animals, fish, insects (including bees) and other invertebrates.
Glyphosate in the news
The APVMA is aware that glyphosate is regularly mentioned in the news. If it is appropriate, we will publish a response to specific events or claims. Past information published by the APVMA is available below.
- 2023 Australian court case
- The APVMA is aware of the court case regarding glyphosate. As the matter is before the Court, it is inappropriate for the APVMA to comment.
- USA civil class actions against Bayer
- The APVMA is aware of previous and ongoing court actions conducted against Bayer in the United States of America.
- 2015 International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) report on glyphosate
- In 2015, the IARC published a report that classified glyphosate as 'probably carcinogenic to humans'. This classification is based on a hazard assessment of the chemical rather than a risk assessment of the chemical products and exposure from use. For more information see the IARC assessment explained.
- The APVMA has completed detailed scientific assessments of the IARC report. The APVMA’s assessments (Volume 1, Volume 2) of the IARC report and the APVMA’s decision that a reconsideration of glyphosate was not required have been published.
- The APVMA’s assessments concluded there is no reliable evidence that products containing glyphosate pose a risk of causing cancer in humans.