WASHINGTON — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Marketing Service division has posted the 2009 Pesticide Data Program Annual Summary to its website at www.ams.usda.gov/pdp.
The site includes an explanatory guide for consumers, along with data provided by cooperating state agencies regarding the level of pesticide residues found in the U.S. food supply.
This report found that overall pesticide residues found on most foods, including fresh and processed fruits and vegetables, beef, catfish, rice, groundwater, and treated and untreated drinking water, were at levels below the tolerances established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Residues exceeding these tolerances were found in 0.3% of all samples tested, while residues with no established tolerance were found in 2.7% of samples.
The EPA encourages consumers to wash fruits and vegetables prior to consumption, and prior to testing, PDP analysts washed all samples used in this study for 10 seconds under gently running cold water “as a consumer would do at home.”