OBJECTIVES: To improve information on exposure to pesticides through diet in Spain by reporting the results on 88 pesticide parameters in 1,109 food samples obtained between 1998 and 2003 as part of the Barcelona program for research on the health quality of foods. MATERIAL AND METHOD: The results are presented by food groups. For fruits and vegetables, the results were compared with those for the previous period. Statistical comparisons were performed using the chi2 test. RESULTS: Of the 1,109 samples, 116 were positive for pesticides (10.5%). Persistent chlorinated compounds were detected in 1.5% and other compounds were found in 14.4%. Positive results were concentrated in fruits, vegetables, spices, cereals and their derivatives. There were no positive results among vegetable oils, eggs or fish products, and almost none in dairy products and meats. Fruits contained the greatest number of pesticides but none were persistent. Vegetables contained fewer pesticides, but some of these were persistent chlorinated compounds. Comparison of the results for fruits and vegetables with those of the 1989-97 period revealed no significant trends. CONCLUSIONS: Although a considerable number of samples contained pesticides, most of these were not persistent chlorinated compounds. The number of pesticides in fruits was notable.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health