Traditional Chinese Simplified Chinese Email this article
Excessive pesticide residues found in water spinach sample

     The Centre for Food Safety (CFS) of the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department today (August 19) found a water spinach sample to have pesticide residue at a level exceeding the legal limit. The CFS is following up on the case.

     A spokesman said, "The CFS collected the water spinach sample at a supermarket in Tai Kok Tsui for testing under its regular Food Surveillance Programme. The test result showed that the water spinach sample contained methamidophos at a level of 0.08 parts per million (ppm), i.e. about 1.6 times the maximum residue limit ( 0.05 ppm).

     "Based on the level of pesticide residue detected in the sample, adverse health effects will not be caused under normal consumption."

     The spokesman said that generally speaking, to reduce pesticide residues in vegetables, members of the public could rinse vegetables several times under running water, then soak them in water for one hour, or blanch them in boiling water for one minute and discard the water. To further reduce the intake of pesticide residues, the outer leaves or peel of the vegetables can also be removed as appropriate.

     Since the Pesticide Residues in Food Regulation (Cap 132CM) came into effect on August 1 last year, the CFS has taken over 31 300 samples at import, wholesale and retail levels for testing for pesticide residues. A total of 106 vegetable and fruit samples (including the unsatisfactory samples announced today) have been detected as having excessive pesticide residues. The overall unsatisfactory rate is less than 0.4 per cent.

     Any person who imports, manufactures or sells any food not in compliance with the requirements of the Pesticide Residues in Food Regulation concerning pesticide residues commits an offence and is liable to a maximum fine of $50,000 and to imprisonment for six months upon conviction.

     The CFS will follow up on the unsatisfactory result, including tracing the source and distribution of the food in question and taking samples for testing, so as to safeguard public health. Investigation is ongoing.

Ends/Wednesday, August 19, 2015
Issued at HKT 17:59


Print this page