According to a news release from Californians for Pesticide Reform, Pesticide Watch and Pesticide Action Network (PAN):
"Ignoring the assessments of top US scientists and its own Scientific Review Committee, the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) announced its approval today for use of methyl iodide, a potent carcinogen and water contaminant, in the state’s strawberry fields."Considering that 90 percent of the strawberries in this country are grown in California and many people cannot afford organic strawberries, we should all be concerned.
How did this happen?
According to a blog post by Kathryn Gilje, PAN’s Executive Director, blame can be placed on:
"[T]he intense lobbying effort waged by Arysta LifeScience, [the] largest private pesticide company in the world, who hired a Kentucky-based PR firm to create a '[California] grassroots campaign' . . . Bluntly put: chemical company interests trumped the science and the concerns of Californians. Now we've all got an incredibly potent, new carcinogen to deal with while Arysta heads home to its headquarters and makes money off its sales."New York and Washington have previously rejected methyl iodide on the state level. Thankfully, the Environmental Protection Agency, according to the press release, “will open a public comment period on the pesticide’s approval due to the ‘complexity of the issues raised and the public interest in methyl iodide.’”
Don’t think our voices are heard in the current stagnant political climate? Click here to quickly send a form letter to California Governor-Elect Jerry Brown letting him know we oppose the use of methyl iodide on California’s strawberries.