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EFSA approves increased levels of herbicide

By Joe Whitworth , 20-Sep-2012

The European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) has approved an application to modify the existing maximum residue level (MRL) for pyridate in celery leaves (dill leaves).

Germany proposed to raise the limit for dill leaves from 0.05mg/kg to 0.2mg/kg after an application from the State Institute for Agriculture, Forestry and Horticulture Saxony-Anhalt.

Pyridate is a selective post-emergent herbicide which is mainly absorbed by the leaves and rapidly hydrolysed to form the metabolite CL 9673 (6-chloro-4-hydroxy-3-phenylpyridazin), which is the compound with herbicidal properties.

Unlikely to pose health risk

EFSA said the use would not result in a consumer exposure exceeding the toxicological reference value and is unlikely to pose a consumer health risk.

“EFSA is of the opinion that if this first tier exposure assessment does not exceed the toxicological reference value for long-term exposure (i.e. the [accepted daily intake] ADI), a consumer health risk can be excluded with a high probability.”

The body added that the submitted supervised residue trials are sufficient to derive a MRL proposal of 0.3mg/kg for dill leaves and analytical method proposed for enforcing the residues of pyridate and its metabolite (free and conjugated is acceptable.

Vegetables investigated

The metabolism of pyridate in primary crops was investigated in leafy vegetables (broccoli), pulses and oilseeds (peanuts) and cereals (maize).

The applicant submitted four good agricultural practice (GAP)-compliant residue trials conducted on dill leaves over two seasons in Germany.

Although there is a minor deficiency identified in the studies (long storage period of the samples prior to analysis), EFSA concludes that the data are sufficient to derive a MRL proposal

“From these studies the peer review established the residue definition for enforcement and for risk assessment as sum of pyridate, its hydrolysis product CL 9673 (6-chloro-4-hydroxy-3-phenylpyridazin) and hydrolysable conjugates of CL 9673, expressed as pyridate,” said the review.

“EFSA is of the opinion that the analytical method for enforcing the proposed MRL for pyridate on dill leaves, which are considered as a very minor crop, is acceptable.”

Read the full opinion HERE

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