News Release

New U.N. Report: We Can Feed The World Without Using Pesticides

For Immediate Release

WASHINGTON, DC—A report released today by the United Nations finds that it is a “myth” that pesticides are needed to feed the world’s 7 billion people. [1] Farmers can produce healthier, nutrient-rich food, with higher yields in the longer term, without the use of pesticides. [2] 

“It is time to stop using pesticides and time to start using sensible farming practices in the U.S.,” says Kara Cook- Schultz, Director of U.S. PIRG’s campaign to Ban Roundup Now. “Pesticides like Roundup are probable carcinogens--so why are we still poisoning our food? We can grow enough food without deadly chemicals.”

The U.N. report found that “chronic exposure to pesticides has been linked to cancer, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases, hormone disruption, developmental disorders and sterility...” [3] Further, an estimated 200,000 people die every year due to acute poisoning from pesticides. [4]

“This reinforces the notion that we don't need pesticides like Roundup, and given the health concerns, the EPA should take action to ban these pesticides,” said Cook-Schultz.

The UN report is also severely critical of pesticide manufacturers like Monsanto (the manufacturer of Roundup), accusing manufacturers of “systematic denial of harms” and of using “aggressive, unethical marketing tactics” to influence governments and consumers.

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U.S. PIRG, the U.S. Public Interest Research Group, is a consumer group that stands up to powerful interests whenever they threaten our health and safety, our financial security, or our right to fully participate in our democratic society.


[1] United Nations, General Assembly, Human Rights Council, “Report of the Special Rapporteur on the right to food,” accessible at:

[2] Id.

[3] Carrington, Damian, The Guardian, “UN experts denounce ‘myth’ pesticides are necessary to feed the world”, accessible at:

[4] United Nations, General Assembly, Human Rights Council, “Report of the Special Rapporteur on the right to food,” accessible at:


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