Human Health: Consumer Concerns to Pesticides

Authored by: George Ekström , Margareta Palmborg

Encyclopedia of Environmental Management

Print publication date:  December  2012
Online publication date:  December  2012

Print ISBN: 9781439829271
eBook ISBN: 9781351235860
Adobe ISBN:


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Roughly half of all foods of vegetable origin from conventional production contain detectable residues of agricultural pesticides. These are often in the form of multiple residues and sometimes lead to an intake in excess of the health-based ‘acute reference dose’ for young children. Conventional ‘Good Agricultural Practice’ used as a basis for legally binding maximum reside limits is not good enough to guarantee residue-free foods and may not be good enough to safeguard consumers’ health. Many consumers react by purchasing ‘organic’ foods to reduce their ‘body burden’ from agricultural chemicals. Government agencies, retailers and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) have designed or proposed new policies and action plans to tackle pesticide residues. An issue still to be tackled is the question of how to manage or avoid multiple residues (‘cocktails’) in single samples.

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