Effect of household preparation on levels of pesticide residues in produce

J AOAC Int. Nov-Dec 1996;79(6):1447-53.


In 1993, the National Academy of Sciences released a report on the effects of pesticides in the diets of infants and children, indicating that current tolerances do not take into account the eating habits and metabolism of young children. In response to that report, a study was undertaken to determine pesticide residues in raw agricultural commodities at levels below the tolerances established by the Environmental Protection Agency. The objective of the study was to determine whether normal household washing, peeling, and cooking procedures had any effect on pesticide residue levels. Low levels of pesticide residues were detected in 97 (40%) of the 243 samples analyzed. The number of samples containing detectable residues dropped to 47 (19%) after household preparation. Results indicate that residue levels in most commodities are substantially reduced after household preparation.

MeSH terms

  • Carbamates*
  • Chromatography, Liquid
  • Food Handling / standards*
  • Fruit / chemistry
  • Guidelines as Topic
  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated*
  • Insecticides / analysis*
  • Organophosphorus Compounds*
  • Pesticide Residues / analysis*
  • United States
  • United States Environmental Protection Agency
  • United States Food and Drug Administration
  • Vegetables / chemistry


  • Carbamates
  • Hydrocarbons, Chlorinated
  • Insecticides
  • Organophosphorus Compounds
  • Pesticide Residues