Dietary exposure from pesticide application on farms in the Agricultural Health Pilot Study

J Expo Anal Environ Epidemiol. Jan-Mar 1997;7(1):61-80.


As part of total human exposure measurements performed on six farms in Iowa and North Carolina during the Agricultural Health Pilot Study, a household duplicate diet, several locally grown foods, an applicator meal, a child duplicate diet, and drinking water samples were collected. The pilot study was designed to test refined and newly developed protocols and analytical methods for collection and analyses of dietary samples to evaluate dietary exposure to farmers and their families in the household associated with current and former applications of pesticides. The household duplicate diet protocol was generally effective as a first step in measuring potential exposures of household members. The analytical methods used were capable of measuring 29 of the 33 targeted Agricultural Health Pilot Study pesticides in dietary samples. Collections were made during a pesticide nonapplication and application monitoring period. Pesticides in the foods and beverages of the participants were quantified at sub-ppb to 30-ppb levels in both the Iowa and North Carolina farms. Increased levels (20 ppb) of the pesticide being applied during the monitoring period were found in the applicator's meal. Dieldrin was persistent in the foods consumed on one Iowa farm. No pesticides were found in drinking water samples. The results show potential dietary exposures exceeding expected values exist to the farmers and their families for several of the pesticides in this study, particularly to those being applied and to the persistent pesticides in the environment.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Agriculture*
  • Child
  • Diet Records
  • Environmental Exposure / analysis*
  • Environmental Monitoring
  • Family Health
  • Food Contamination / analysis*
  • Humans
  • Iowa
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Maximum Allowable Concentration
  • North Carolina
  • Occupational Exposure / analysis
  • Occupational Health*
  • Pesticide Residues / isolation & purification*
  • Pilot Projects
  • Reference Values
  • Water Supply / analysis


  • Pesticide Residues