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Govt Clarifies MRLs Of Pesticides Are Fixed Differently For Verious Food Commodities Based On Their Risk Assessments

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The Centre has clarified that India has one of the most stringent standards of Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) in the world and MRLs of pesticides are fixed differently for different food commodities based on their risk assessments. The clarification came amid some media reports claiming that the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) allows 10 times more pesticide residue in herbs and spices.

Pesticides are regulated by the Ministry of Agriculture through the Central Insecticide Board and Registration Committee constituted under the Insecticide Act, 1968. The Agriculture Ministry said in a statement that the Scientific Panel on Pesticides Residues of FSSAI examines the data received through the Central Insecticide Board and Registration Committee. It recommends the MRLs after performing risk assessment considering the dietary consumption of the Indian population and health concerns with respect to all age groups.

The total number of pesticides registered by the Central Insecticide Board and Registration Committee in India is more than 295 out of which 139 pesticides are registered for use in spices. The statement said that the MRLs are dynamic in nature and regularly revised based on scientific data. This practice is aligned with global standards and ensures that MRL revisions are made on a scientifically valid basis, reflecting the latest findings and international norms.

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