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close this bookIdeas for Action : Save, Recycle and Do Not Pollute (IIRR, 1992, 146 p.)
close this folderPesticides
View the documentPesticide management in the home (In case you need to use these chemicals)
View the documentAlternatives to pesticides
View the documentKeeping chemicals out of your food
View the documentFood safety practices

Keeping chemicals out of your food

Some of the country's agricultural products (i.e., vegetables, fruits) that are being sold in the market have been found to have detectable level of pesticide residues. There is a lack of consensus on what safe levels are. Thus, concerned consumers must start taking matters into their own hands. As with all consumer actions, this has the double benefit of protecting individual health and creating broad-based-pressure for institutional change.

The goal is to purchase food that has been treated with as few dangerous artificial chemicals as possible. The first place to look into is the local grocery store or supermarket. Unfortunately, few of them disclose the origin or chemical history of the produce they sell. This situation must change if consumers are to make informed choices.

Tips on how to keep chemicals out of your food:

· Be smart in buying fruits and vegetables. Avoid those that are heavily sprayed with pesticides. Fruits and vegetables without any mark of even small insect infestation mean that artificial chemicals have been used on it.

Be smart in buying fruits and vegetables

· Buy fresh produce. You are more likely to find them in farmers' markets, food coops or natural food stores. Beware: The word organic, used by itself is not controlled and can be misused by farmers who apply dangerous pesticides.

Fresh produce

· Wash all produce. Thoroughly wash fruits, vegetables, grains and legumes. For vegetables, the best way is to use 1/2 baking soda with I liter of water. Soak the vegetables for 10-20 minutes in the mixture and wash with water afterwards.


· Rice sold in big supermarkets, especially rice sold by NFA, should tee washed thoroughly to remove pesticide residues and chemical preservatives.

· Look for agricultural products which useless chemicals, like traditional vegetables which command alower price in the market.

· Look for suppliers who are producing organically grown vegetables.

· Limit meat consumption. When you eat meat, be aware that most animals are raised on factory farms where they are fed large doses of growth hormones and antibiotics.

Limit meat consumption

· Grow your own food organically. Grow your own produce without using pesticides and artificial fertilizers. Make your own fertilizer by composting your organic garbage.


· Do not buy unregistered, dented and corroded canned goods. Check withthe Bureau of Food and Drugs for a list of canned products which were found to contain high lead content, such as Maxam dental cream, Lychees (Narcissus) and Sesame Oil (Pearl River Bridge).

Dented and corroded canned goods

Ideas for Action:

A Technology Information Kit, November 23 - 28, 1992