22 Aug 2012

Most growers found to be following spray rules

10:30 am on 22 August 2012

The Ministry for Primary Industries says most fruit and vegetable growers are keeping within the rules for maximum application rates and minimum withholding periods on sprays and other agrichemicals.

The results of the ministry's latest food residues surveillance programme indicate most growers are keeping within the rules.

Tests to check the level of chemical residues in fresh unwashed produce are done on foods such as lemons, spring onion, feijoas, sweetcorn and even olive oil.

Seven of the 133 samples tested contained residues exceeding the maximum limit allowed for agricultural chemicals. Six of the non-compliant samples were of olive oils with excessive amounts of fungicide.

MPI says none of the samples pose a threat to human health, but it will be contacting the growers involved to make sure they keep good records of the chemicals used and follow label directions.