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Local fruits & veggies a hit in Europe, in spite of bugs

Santo Domingo.- Dominican Republic exports five varieties of oriental vegetables and two types of fruit to the European Union, which are under surveillance for pesticide residues.

Since it started exporting in 2010 the only difficulty had been with bananas, but was eventually resolved, Agriculture Ministry Plant Protection director Emigdio Gomez affirmed Monday.

He said the problem involved one German certifier which had approved the postharvest product used to conserve bananas and can only be lodged only in the peel, which isn’t edible. The country exports mangoes, bananas, bangaña (pepinillo), hot pepper, balsam pear, eggplant and green beans to the European Union.

Since April the EU began to look into the mangoes and removed it from the pesticide listings in June 2010.

The exporter had to pay a high cost for that e inspection: for each 50 boxes of fruit shipped 500 more euros were charged for the analysis and red tape.

That left five oriental vegetables in a more difficult situation because of their nature of intensive farming, increased their pesticide use.

Gomez said there were 65 positive cases in the first half of 2010, but went down for the second half of that yea; remained normal In 2011; 24 cases until last July, an average of less than four cases per month.  “At first we had 20 cases in just one month.”

Quoted by, Gomez said that of the five plants in the control, the European Union evaluates each one individually.

The pesticide control for bangana was discontinued last January, the removal for balsam pear has already been requested, the official said, adding in 100% of the cases, the latter hasn’t reached 5% in 2011 or thus far this year.

He said the country’s most serious case is the hot chili pepper, because of a fruit-boring weevil prompts farmers to overuse pesticides, although its control has to be preventive.

Source: Dominican Today

Category: DR News |

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Last updated March 25, 2017 at 5:40 PM
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