Thursday, January 19, 2012

FDA Finds Low Levels of Carbendazim in Orange Juice

Late last year Dr. Oz's investigation into arsenic levels in apple juice caused a stir. (If you missed the story, click here to read more.)

Now, there's an issue with orange juice. According to the U.S Food and Drug Administration (FDA):
"The [FDA] has received reports that low levels of the chemical carbendazim have been found in some orange juice products that contain imported orange juice concentrates.

"Carbendazim is a fungus-killing chemical used in Brazil and some other countries to preserve agricultural crops. Brazil provides about 11 percent of the orange juice in the United States market, and industry reports indicate that carbendazim is being used there because of a problem with black spot, a type of mold that grows on orange trees.

"However, use of carbendazim on oranges and in orange juices is illegal in the United States. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has not approved the use of carbendazim as a pesticide on oranges and it is an unlawful pesticide residue under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act."
Furthermore, the FDA—which, by the way, at first erroneously contested Oz's findings—"believes the levels of carbendazim are so low that there are no public health concerns. The agency bases this conclusion on the preliminary risk assessment conducted by EPA, the agency that evaluates the safety of pesticides."

Rest assured, though, that the FDA is looking out for us:

"If FDA identifies a brand of orange juice that presents a public health risk due to levels of carbendazim, the agency will alert the public and take the appropriate next steps to ensure that the product is removed from the market."
Click here for more information (from the FDA) about carbendazim and orange juice products.

In addition, Australia announced today that it is banning the sale of oranges and orange juice that contain carbendazim.

No comments: