By Kathleen Morrison
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Extra info for Pesticide residues in food : data and federal oversight
And, in comparison to FDA’s regulatory monitoring program, AMS’s Pesticide Data Program is able to take considerably larger sample sizes. While these two sources of data can help FDA identify emerging pesticide residue problems, because of their sampling methodologies, neither study can be used to directly and reliably evaluate the effectiveness of FDA’s monitoring program across the domestic and imported food supplies. , over 270 different items composited from samples collected from three different cities), each study is only conducted four times each year.
These statistical principles suggest that it would be more valid to compare violation rates for a given commodity for imports to the same commodity for domestics— that is, an apples-to-apples comparison if violation rates are suspected to differ by commodity. Regardless, such a comparison would examine domestic and imported samples, whether by commodity or overall, selected in a statistically valid manner with sample sizes that are large enough and balanced enough to yield high levels of statistical confidence.
93 percent for the pesticide azoxystrobin. The residues AMS detected on the other 9 commodities generally had similar or lower average concentrations relative to their tolerances. In broccoli, for example, the four pesticides with the highest average residue concentrations averaged well below 1 percent of their tolerances in 2007. Table 8 presents the highest average pesticide residue concentration as a percentage of tolerance in the most recent year of AMS testing for all 10 commodities. Because there have been improvements in the scope and precision of AMS’s testing program and changes in EPA’s established tolerances, AMS’s residue data are not directly comparable over time.