The Production Ministry will be taking stock of pesticides and other chemicals used in growing Costa Rica’s vegetables through the new National Program for Residues and Pesticides in Vegetables, according to a statement from the ministry this week.
The goal of the program is to make sure all pesticides and chemicals are used in compliance with “norms of good agricultural practices,” said the ministry’s Plant Health Department (SFE) agricultural director Marco Alfaro.
Production Ministry workers will be heading out to the fields, municipal farmers’ markets and supermarkets to collect vegetable samples, Alfaro said.
The ministry will then coordinate with organizations and farmers to educate about the correct use of pesticides, using guidelines established by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Additionally, a national plan to monitor pesticides for agricultural products will be developed, and reports on the matter will be made public on the SFE Web site, protecnet.go.cr, the statement said.