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Brazil judge denies MSMA ban on cotton

A federal judge in Brazil has rejected a public prosecutor request for a ban on the sales and use of the arsenical herbicide, MSMA, on cotton, national media report. The public prosecutor’s office, the MPF, contends that MSMA carries health and environmental risks due to its “toxic and carcinogenic” conversion. A lawsuit was launched against the pesticide regulatory agencies calling for the immediate suspension of registrations of products containing the active ingredient. The environmental agency, the Ibama, concluded that MSMA showed no potential for reaching groundwater, while the national health surveillance agency, the Anvisa, identified no “major” risks to human health and only cautioned increased controls on product use where new evidence of harm arose. The Ibama defended continued use, noting that the US EPA study on which the MPF case was based on “authorised use of MSMA on cotton”. Judge Marcelo Zandavali cited EPA findings that inorganic arsenic residues in foodstuffs were “very unlikely” to be derived from the ai’s use on cotton.

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