CSI Lab: Crop Science Investigation
An exciting expansion to the FHR campus is the Crop Science Investigation (CSI) laboratory at FHR Corporate Headquarters, Stewartville, MN. The initial mission of CSI will be to analyze feed, soil, grain and manure to detect glyphosate and its devious break down product AMPA.Formaldehyde, another break down product forming in the cascade of toxic compounds as glyphosate degrades, will also be tested. When the lab gets up and running, 2, 4-D another widely used herbicide will also be investigated. Dr. George Kindness will be the laboratory director with John Oolman assisting him as second in command.
The whole point of this laboratory is to provide a service to our customers that are concerned that their farm, feed, or seed has been contaminated with several of the toxic compounds mentioned above.
The US Geological Survey (USGS) has revealed that glyphosate and its breakdown product aminomethylphosphonic acid (known as AMPA) are frequently found in rainfall and rivers in the Mississippi Basin, where most GMO (genetically modified organism) crops tolerant to glyphosate are grown.The presence of glyphosate and AMPA in surface waters means that drinking water quality and aquatic wildlife may be at risk. Studies have shown many aquatic species are affected by the herbicide and its breakdown product, and there is growing concern about the safety of the product for human health. In addition the overuse of glyphosate on GMO soybean and corn crops is driving an escalation and spread of problem weeds resistant to the herbicide, meaning even more Roundup has to be used, often in combination with other herbicides, in an attempt to control these new “super” weeds.
The USGS found glyphosate in more than 60% of air and rain sampled at three locations in Mississippi, Iowa and Indiana, with AMPA found in more than 50% of samples, at concentrations up to 9.1ng/cubic meter and 0.49ng/cubic meter respectively. Researchers from the USGS estimate that about 1% of glyphosate sprayed in catchments ended up in surface waters in the four areas where monitoring was conducted in streams and rivers. The highest median level of glyphosate detected was 5.7μg/liter. This level would not be allowed to enter public supply untreated under the Clean Water Act.
CSI will now become part of the solution by testing and recommending remediation processes using biologically based soil amendments.