The Federation for the Environment and Nature Conservation Germany (BUND) warns of high levels of pesticide contamination in strawberries. The organization said on Monday that fungicide residues were found in 15 of 19 cases of fruit samples from different retailers. A good half of the samples therefore had two or more active ingredients against fungi.
In three cases, four different fungicides were found. It is precisely this multiple burden that is worrying, explained Corinna Hölzel from BUND. "Through interactions between pesticides, their toxic effect can be increased. These dangers have so far not been sufficiently taken into account by the risk assessment."
Agents against fungal diseases are often used as a preventive measure on strawberry fields. However, many fungicides have been shown to be harmful to health and the environment. According to BUND, they can affect the hormone system, damage reproduction or are toxic to aquatic organisms and birds. They also get into the groundwater and then have to be filtered out again at great expense.
The environmentalists are calling for stricter rules against the use of pesticides and total bans on certain substances. They recommend consumers to buy organic strawberries.