Contaminated food

Published: Thursday 30 November 2000

at least 10 per cent more pesticides were detected in fruits and vegetables sold in Britain this year as compared to last year, says a uk government report. The report states that in 1.6 per cent of the samples surveyed the levels of pesticide were much higher than the permissible limits. The levels were found to be particularly very high in pears, Spanish sweet peppers and winter lettuces. "The public will be appalled to know that almost half of the fresh fruits and vegetables they eat contain pesticides. As the government advocates that more and more fresh fruits and vegetables should be eaten, it should take steps to ensure that they are pesticide-free," says Sandra Bell, Real Food Campaigner of Friends of the Earth, an environmental pressure group. Ministry of agriculture, fisheries and food says that the increased levels of pesticide could only cause mild stomach upset in toddlers. Counter-attacking this statement Bell stated that it was unacceptable for government advisors to say that the pesticide levels are safe when the long-term effects of these chemicals are not known. The report was prepared after analysing 2,500 samples of foodstuff. The samples included both imported and home produced food.

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