French spermcount down

Andrew M. Seaman writes: "Researchers found that between 1989 and 2005, the number of sperm in one milliliter of the average 35-year-old Frenchman's semen fell from about 74 million to about 50 million - a decrease of roughly 32 percent". [Chicago Tribune]


  1. I smell a Troll. I am using my skeptical voice when I ask “Seriously, an article about semen count by a guy named Seaman?”

    1. No, no. They are drinking and smoking less. They need to increase their intake of vin ordinaire and Gitanes!

  2. It sounds like it’s time for a Pundit Fight! over whether to blame the sissifying effects of basically any social development post 1200AD, since that would be emotionally satisfying if questionably supported, or assorted wacky endocrine disruptors whose manufacturers assure us that they are 100% perfectly safe and why do you hate the economy so much?

  3. The samples are limited to fertility clinics, so they can’t really say that there was a decrease overall to the population, but only to a group that you might expect to have issues to begin with. I suppose you can extrapolate the results to a degree, but I wouldn’t call it proof.

  4. There has been little speculation in the UK so far what the cause might be. We might not come off so well in comparison. For French men read Western men, no doubt? (Or maybe George Osborne has dampened any capacity which we still had for gloating today!)

    1. My guess is that the choice in underwear and tight jeans play a bigger role than anything else. Though France does have an inordinate amount of nuclear power plants…

  5. No idea if this might be a factor, especially since the article points out it’s actually a world-wide problem as opposed to specifically French, but I wonder if the large number of nuclear reactors in the country might be worth considering.

  6. Nuclear reactors are the first thing that comes to mind. 

    I’d be interested to know if there were any policy changes at the EU level regarding foodstuffs over the years that might correspond to the change – such as allowing a certain pesticide.

    Also worth wondering, but impossible to check, is if the decline began in 1989 or if it was the continuation of a trend.  For that matter, did it all happen at once or was it a gradual decline (like aging).

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