Article
Food Safety

FoodChain ID Technical Director Karen Everstine, Ph.D., Shares Global Herb and Spice Pesticide Residue Trends During April ASTA Presentation

An analysis of global pesticide residue alerts linked to spices offers key insights into product and country sources, according to a presentation by Karen Everstine, Ph.D., technical director of food safety solutions at FoodChain ID.

Dr. Everstine delivered her remarks at the ASTA Symposium on Navigating Lack of Harmonization of Pesticide MRLS for Spices, part of the American Spice and Trade Association 2024 Annual Meeting, April 16-18 in Tucson.  Conference topics and themes covered many issues facing the spice industry, from the need to build a food safety culture that is nimble in responding to emerging challenges to key topics in sustainability. 

Dr. Everstine’s presentation on global pesticide incidents drew on HorizonScan Ingredient Risk Identification data collected between January 1, 2023 and March 31, 2024.  Data from the presentation can be viewed by submitting the form below.  HorizonScan, operated by UK-based Fera Science Ltd and distributed in the U.S. by FoodChain ID, compiles food safety issues from 115 government sources covering 600 food commodities.   

During the time period analyzed, 15 percent of pesticide notifications involved chlorpyrifos, followed by ethylene oxide (8 percent); carbendazim (5 percent); thiamethoxam (4 percent); and acetamiprid (4 percent).   

Chlorpyrifos has been in the news during the past several years following several court rulings. In April 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit ordered the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to issue a final rule addressing the use of chlorpyrifos in food or feed crops within 60 days.  EPA in August 2021 issued a final rule revoking all tolerances for chlorpyrifos, effective February 28, 2022, which left the U.S. with no chlorpyrifos tolerances.   The action was then challenged by several parties in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit. In November 2023, the Eighth Circuit vacated EPA's August 2021 rule that revoked all chlorpyrifos MRLs.  On February 5, 2024, EPA issued a technical correction / final rule reinstating all tolerances for chlorpyrifos immediately.  

Data trends showed that the U.S. issued 22 percent of global pesticide alerts during the time period. Of those alerts, over half were for products imported from Mexico (mostly cilantro, as well as basil, chives, mint, and tamarind).  After the U.S., France followed and issued 17 percent of the global pesticide alerts, with Germany next at 11 percent.  The Czech Republic and the Netherlands were both at 8 percent. 

For countries of origin that triggered the alerts, India received the most alerts at 22 percent for its products and was followed by Mexico at 14 percent.  Both China and Thailand received 5 percent of the alerts for their products. 

In terms of herbs and spices that triggered the most alerts, cilantro triggered the most pesticide alerts (14 percent).  This was followed by spice mixtures (13 percent), cumin (13 percent), other herbs (12 percent) and basil (8 percent).  

“Monitoring supply chain pesticide data is essential in ensuring the safety of food products and in complying with Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) requirements to implement an effective supply chain risk management program,” Everstine said. 

“HorizonScan™ is an essential tool in monitoring incidents in the supply and in early identification of emerging trends and regulatory priorities. Frequent global regulatory updates, varying terminology and multiple languages can make data challenging to track, and that’s why HorizonScan is an essential and practical tool.”

Submit the form below to view the data from our presentation at the ASTA's 2024 Annual Meeting.

 

Newsletter subscription
I would like to be contacted by a member of the FoodChain ID team

We take your personal data and privacy seriously. By completing this form, you are confirming that you accept our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

Stay up to date with our newsletter

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Interesting articles

Article
Food Safety

US FDA Revokes Brominated Vegetable Oil Authorization

Document
Food Safety

Market Entry Checklist for Pesticide MRL and Contaminant Limit Compliance 

Document
Food Safety

Pesticide MRLs: Varying Global Pesticide Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) From Apples to Carrots

Article
Food Safety

Pesticide MRLs: Recent Challenges and Violations 

Article
Food Safety

State Food and Color Additive Bans: Unpacking the Impact on Your Products

Document
Food Safety

Staying Ahead of the Curve in Animal Feed Production