Vegetables Produced by Kerala Farmers Safe: KAU

Published: 06th January 2016 04:24 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th January 2016 04:24 AM   |  A+A-


THRISSUR: The vegetables produced by Kerala farmers are safe to eat, according to a report published by the Kerala Agricultural University (KAU). The report based on the pesticide residue analysis conducted at the  laboratory at College of Agriculture, Vellayani says that no hazardous element was found in  208 out of the  210 samples collected from farmers’ fields across the state.

At the same time, the analysis of samples of masala powders, spices and condiments collected from various supermarkets has shown that many of the items contain residues of hazardous chemicals, though below dangerous level and hence more vigil is required in this sector. Dr Thomas Biju Mathew, Professor and Head, Pesticide Residue Analytical Laboratory, said that the residues found in very few samples of vegetables like bitter gourd , snake gourd, cowpea, amaranthus and salad cucumber were  below the permissible limit. The 20 samples of processed food collected from open market were also found to be safe, he said. Out of the 186 samples of 31 items of condiments like chilli and chilli products, masala powders, fenugreek etc., only two samples of cardamom were found to contain residues above the FSSAI permissible levels, he added. The decreased incidence of pesticide residue in vegetables and condiments is attributed to increased public awareness about the hazards of consuming products contaminated with pesticide residues.

The KAU has been publishing periodical reports on analysis of samples collected from open market and farmers’ fields. The pesticide residue analytical lab at Vellayani is the only public sector laboratory  with national accreditation. Farmers can get their produce tested at this lab free of cost, if they submit the samples with a certificate from the agricultural officer concerned.


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