viernes, 25 de abril de 2014
EPA halts pesticide use on apples until new safety studies are done
People who eat nitrosamines have higher levels of cancers
The Environmental Working Group (EWG) is calling on the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to halt use of a pesticide commonly applied to conventionally grown apples to limit storage damage until EPA has done further safety studies.
EWG’s president, Ken Cook, wrote EPA on Thursday asking that the agency launch a new investigation to determine whether the use of diphenylamine, or DPA, is safe for U.S. consumers who, according to 2010 industry data, use about 42.5 pounds of apple products per person each year.
The American public deserves the same level of protection as Europeans from pesticide risks. We urge EPA to halt the use of DPA on U.S. fruit until a rigorous analysis by EPA of the chemical can prove that it poses a reasonable certainty of no harm to consumers.
Applying DPA to European apples and pears was banned by the European Commission in 2012, citing lack of sufficient safety data from the manufacturers, and, since March of this year, the European Union will only allow importation of conventionally grown U.S. apples if detectable DPA levels are 0.1 parts per million or below.
In 2010, the U.S. Department of Agriculture found measurable levels of DPA on 82.7 percent of the raw, conventionally grown apples tested and at average concentrations four times the EU import limit. The EPA tolerance level for DPA is 10 ppm.
DPA is typically applied to the fruit by dipping, drenching or spraying after it’s picked to help prevent “storage scald,” a blackening or browning of the skin that can occur on apples held in cold storage for months after the fall harvest. While it’s officially regulated as a pesticide, DPA functions as a fungicide and growth regulator.
People who eat nitrosamines have higher levels of cancers. These contaminants are known by EPA and other agencies to be something we want to avoid..
There are about 7,500 apple growers across the U.S., who produce nearly 100 varieties of the fruit in every state, although Washington state is the top producer. Apples are considered one of the most valuable crops grown in the U.S., and we are the world’s second-largest apple producer after China.
Source: Food Safety News