Pesticide Industry Propaganda: The Real Story

The Real Story Behind the Myths

Monday, May 1, 1995

Pesticide Industry Propaganda: The Real Story

The Real Story Behind the Myths

To All Concerned About Pesticide Safety:

Sometimes misinformation is repeated so often that it sounds like fact. Such is the case with the rampant misinformation trumpeted by opponents of tougher health standards for pesticides.

I urge you to read this report, Pesticide Industry Propaganda: The Real Story, so that you will know the truth about the threats that pesticides pose to public health.

The report covers eight myths about pesticides that you have heard repeatedly in the media, including claims that animal tests are irrelevant to protecting humans, and that a person would have to eat some huge amount of food to be exposed to pesticides at anywhere near the levels that produced toxic effects in animals.

In fact, the same companies that criticize animal studies, support them when the findings show their products to be safe. And if humans were exposed to the high doses of pesticides animals receive in experiments, the health effects would be catastrophic; a huge proportion of the human population would suffer cancer, nerve damage, reproductive or other health problems, depending on the pesticide. Of course, human exposure to pesticides in food and water is lower precisely to avoid these results.

Other popularly reported myths include:

Truth is a precious and important tool. Pesticides in food, water and many other sources threaten our children's health. We should use the truth -- not propaganda -- to protect our children from toxic substances.

The organizations listed above are dedicated to improving children's protection from pesticides. Please contact them with any questions you may have.


David P. Rall, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (1971-1990)
Founder and Director, National Toxicology Program (1978-1990)
Assistant Surgeon General (1971-1990)

Key Issues: