Glyphosate: Call for information
We have published a summary of responses to our call for information on the herbicide glyphosate.
This call for information was the first step in gaining a better understanding of how glyphosate is viewed in Aotearoa New Zealand. The report is a summary of the responses we received.
- A weed killer used in New Zealand since the 1970s.
- It is common and is the active ingredient in many consumer and agricultural products.
- Used by home gardeners, farmers, and councils.
- It is safe to use if you follow the instructions and the rules.
Who responded to the call for information
We received at total of 465 responses from members of the public, professional users, and suppliers of glyphosate. Most of the responses were from individuals or individual organisations (451 responses), with the other 14 responses from industry groups who represent a large number of interested parties.
- Most responders were professional users who stated glyphosate, if used according to controls and regulations, is safe and highly beneficial.
- Others pointed out that any chemical is dangerous if used incorrectly, but that risk can be avoided or mitigated through appropriate protective measures.
Members of the public
- More than half (60 percent) were non-users of glyphosate, who felt it was a “toxic poison” that should be banned or at least restricted.
- The others were domestic users who mainly supported glyphosate use, with perhaps some extra restrictions.
What you told us
- The positive and negative effects of glyphosate not being available.
- The alternatives to glyphosate should it not be available.
- The impacts to Māori.
- Managing the risks of glyphosate.
- Concerns about and benefits of using glyphosate.
Respondents also told us:
- how they use glyphosate, for example, farming, orchards, forestry, domestic use, weed control
- the glyphosate products they use
- quantity of glyphosate they import, manufacture or sell.
The summary report forms part of the information that could be used to assess whether there are grounds to reassess glyphosate.
If grounds are established, and a formal reassessment application is made, you will have an opportunity to make a submission on the application once it has been publicly notified.
Glyphosate is a herbicide used to control weeds. Products containing glyphosate are among the most common herbicides used in New Zealand, and around the world. It was first approved for use in New Zealand in the 1970s. Glyphosate products are sold under a variety of brand names, with Roundup being the most recognisable brand.
We issued a call for information about glyphosate and its use, running from April 2021 until October 2021. This call for information was the first step in understanding how glyphosate is currently used in New Zealand.
Information we were looking for
We wanted to find out from importers, manufacturers, professional users, retailers, organisations, community groups, and the public:
- information that is relevant to the current use, practices, and benefits of glyphosate products
- evidence of the effects of glyphosate products: positive or adverse impacts; toxicology; ecotoxicology; environmental fate studies; or monitoring results
- how glyphosate products are used and applied in different areas, for example, agricultural, domestic, in public areas, for conservation, or as an aquatic herbicide
- your views on the positive or negative impacts you think glyphosate products have on our environmental, economic, social and cultural wellbeing.