In article <firstname.lastname@example.org> email@example.com (Pesticide Action Network North America Reg Ctr) writes:
>URGENT: Get Rid of Food Carcinogens!
>On August 19th, the Clinton administration announced that it
>intends to repeal the strongest federal anti-cancer law on the
>books, the Delaney clause of the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic
>Act. The Delaney clause says that cancer-causing pesticides that
>concentrate in processed foods must be removed from food...
>...EPA officials say the administration's goal is to move toward a
>health based standard, and has announced a commitment to reduce
>pesticide use. But although it contains other pieces
>representing important improvements over current pesticide laws,
>the administration's August 19th package guts a public
>health-protecting standard in favor of "negligible risk,"
>establishes no phase out schedule for high hazard pesticides, and
>sets no targets for pesticide use reduction.
>...Followed by a list of very important actions, most of which have nothing
>to do with the Delaney clause...
I think the organic/sustainable ag. movement is shooting itself in the
foot by clinging to the Delany clause. When we continue to wail that
parts per billion and parts per trillion pesticide residues on food are
a major public health risk, we look pretty foolish and loose credibility.
(and may hurt our own cause since more than one study has found that much
organic produce has small levels of pesticide residue by the time it gets
to the shelves.)
Of course the Delany clause is a wonderful tool to push for a great goal,
the reduction of pesticide use, and there's nothing like whipping up fear
of CANCER in the general public to get Congress moving, but in the long
run I think it hurts us to spend our energy on this rather than on the
REALLY GOOD reasons to cut pesticide use 1) ecosystem damage 2) farm worker
and rural community poisoning 3) soil loss from nonsustainable practices...
Of course these are harder to sell because they don't affect the general
public directly, but it can be done.
So if the pesticide industry thinks setting low but detectable limits will
help them I say let them win that one and lets move forward on the other
fronts (many of which were mentioned in the above quoted post).