Another piece of the Monsanto facade is coming down.


A recent study, published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has suggested that glyphosate “might be contributing to the death of honey bees and native bees around the world.”1

“Increased mortality of honey bee colonies has been attributed to several factors but is not fully understood. The herbicide glyphosate is expected to be innocuous to animals, including bees, because it targets an enzyme only found in plants and microorganisms. However, bees rely on a specialized gut microbiota that benefits growth and provides defense against pathogens. Most bee gut bacteria contain the enzyme targeted by glyphosate, but vary in whether they possess susceptible versions and, correspondingly, in tolerance to glyphosate. Exposing bees to glyphosate alters the bee gut community and increases susceptibility to infection by opportunistic pathogens. Understanding how glyphosate impacts bee gut symbionts and bee health will help elucidate a possible role of this chemical in colony decline.”2

Researchers from the University of Texas at Austin exposed honeybees to glyphosate at levels known to occur in crop fields, yards, and at roadsides. Three days later they found that the insects had significantly reduced gut microbiotas:3

  • of eight dominant species of healthy bacteria in the exposed bees, four were found to be less abundant
  • the hardest hit, Snodgrassella alvi, is a critical microbe that helps bees process food and defend against pathogens

The team also noted that native bumble bees have microbiomes that are similar to honey bees so its likely that they would be affected in the same way.


Research co-leader Erick Motta says their study shows that “better guidelines for glyphosate use, especially regarding bee exposure,” are needed “because right now the guidelines assume bees are not harmed by the herbicide.” This research clearly shows otherwise.


We have been reporting on this dangerous poison for years and over the last couple of months, things have really started to spiral out of control for the Big Ag giant. We will be watching to see what Monsanto, farmers and the government do with this new information and will update you accordingly.

Sources and References

  1. Cosmos Magazine, September 25, 2018.
  2. PNAS, September 24, 2018.
  3. Cosmos Magazine, September 25, 2018.