BS in Agricultural Business
Growing consumer demand for knowledge in the area of food safety and producer accountability on what is applied to fresh produce is resulting in a greater need for transparency in the industry. Additionally, the demand for safe, fresh produce year round has led to extensive international trade and consumers to wonder if imported produce is of the same quality of that in produced in the U.S. The study analyzes the differences and similarities between pesticide application tolerance standards, and labels for applied use on berries produced in the U.S., Mexico, and Chile. This is done by reviewing tolerance information and criteria from governmental agencies that regulate pesticide use levels and individual pesticide labels from each country to determine the comparative level of standards. The results indicate equal regulations for Mexico-produced and exported tolerance levels on berries compared with U.S. numbers in and even longer wait periods following pesticide application before harvest. Meanwhile, Chilean pesticide regulations showed even higher standards on pesticide residue levels for berries, but still shorter harvest wait periods compared with the U.S. The study provides an interesting looking into international standards for fresh berries and how the industry is evolving to meet consumer demand for quality assurance and safety.