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Glyphosate, discovered by Monsanto's Dr. John E. Franz in 1970, has become one of the most environmentally friendly and commercially successful herbicides in the world. Glyphosate was the result of a program at Monsanto to find a herbicide that would control perennial weeds. This narrative will take you into the Monsanto of the 1960s and early 1970s to describe the events that led to this discovery, and the people who played a part in making it a commercial reality. Key decisions and resources employed, particularly in the metabolism/residue area, are described that lead to one of the most rapid discovery to commercialization timelines on record. Formulation efforts are described along with how the commercialization of this non-selective herbicide changed Monsanto from a midwestern row crop company to a global multinational company. The marketing of glyphosate is summarized in four stages to the present ROUNDUP READY® technology, Monsanto, St. Louis, MO.
herbicide, perennial weeds, organophosphonates, phosphorates, screening program, acetanilides, plant growth regulators, metabolism, residue, nuclear magnetic resonance, mass spectrometry, carcinogen, formulation, glyphosate, glyphosate salts, surfactant, translocation, Environmental Protection Agency
Owner, Magin and Associates, Baton Rouge, LA