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Potentially Dangerous Pesticide Approved for Use in California


LA Testing provides environmental and air testing services to ensure indoor and outdoor surroundings are safe for people.

Garden Grove, CA

Earlier this month California regulators approved the controversial pesticide, methyl iodide, for use on fruits and vegetables across the state. Methyl iodide is replacing methyl bromide, which is a potent neurotoxin and one of a number of chemicals that have been found to deplete beneficial ozone in the upper atmosphere.

Environmentalists and farm worker groups are unhappy with the decision and point out that methyl iodide has links to cancer and potential environmental damage, particularly ground water contamination. One of the largest markets for the pesticide will be California’s $1.6 billion strawberry industry, nut orchards and fresh flower nurseries.

Methyl iodide was approved for use as a pesticide in a controversial decision by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 2007. The chemical is listed under California’s Proposition 65 as a chemical known to the state to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity. The American Conference of Industrial Hygienists (ACGIH) and The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) classifies methyl iodide as a suspected human carcinogen.

Exposures to pesticides can come in many forms and be especially damaging to children. According to the EPA website discussing pesticides and food, “…there are ‘critical periods’ in human development when exposure to a toxin can permanently alter the way an individual’s biological system operates.” Diet and environmental exposures to pesticides are the major exposure routes for children.

LA Testing, an affiliate of EMSL Analytical and a leading provider of environmental testing services, has extensive experience providing testing solutions to ensure people and the environment are protected. “The use of methyl iodide in California needs to be carefully monitored,” reported Ben Sublasky, National Director of Client Services for LA Testing and EMSL Analytical. “This pesticide has the potential for environmental damage and could cause health concerns for farm workers and communities near agricultural areas if improperly used.”

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About LA Testing and EMSL Analytical, Inc.
LA Testing and EMSL Analytical are providers of environmental testing services and products to professionals and the general public. The companies have an extensive list of accreditations from leading organizations as well as state and federal regulating bodies.


 California Pesticide
 methyl iodide fruits
 vegetables neurotoxin
 cancer environmental

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