Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) Pesticide Data Program Celebrates 30 Years

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Posted by Brenda Foos and Chris Pappas, AMS Science and Technology Oversight Programs Division in Health and Safety

20 October 2021

Join the Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) Pesticide Data Program (PDP) to celebrate their 30e birthday! Since 1991, the program has monitored pesticide residues in the US food supply, with an emphasis on sampling the foods most consumed by infants and children.

The PDP database is currently one of the world’s largest sources of food pesticide residue data. PDP data is used by groups interested in pesticide residues, and its primary use is the review of the Environmental Protection Agency’s pesticide registration, including setting limits for pesticides permitted in food, called tolerances. PDP data is also used in the marketing of U.S. agricultural products around the world, as there are requirements for pesticide residue levels in many countries.

PDP is a federal-state partnership and is managed by AMS staff. The participating states are California, Colorado, Florida, Maryland, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Texas and Washington.

State departments of agriculture collect and analyze approximately 10,000 food samples per year, and each sample is tested for up to 515 pesticides. PDP uses advanced analytical chemistry approaches and a robust quality assurance program to ensure high quality residue data. Over 310,000 food samples were collected and analyzed from 126 different products – ranging from apples to zucchini – generating 42 million pesticide-product matched data points.

PDP results help demonstrate the high quality of the U.S. food supply, as strong results show that pesticide residues are below EPA limits in almost all food samples (typically> 99%) and more than a third of food. the samples do not contain any detectable pesticide residue (on average, over the past 5 years). PDP’s annual results are presented in an annual summary that describes the program and its findings. PDP data is available through the PDP website and the search application.

Category / Subject:
Health and security

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