October 30, 2012, Ottawa: As part of the Canadian Food Inspection Agency‘s (CFIA) annual testing of various food products, a study released today found that more than 98 percent of a wide variety of food samples tested were compliant with Health Canada standards for chemical residues and metals.
This CFIA study was conducted in 2009-2010 under the National Chemical Residue Monitoring Program (NCRMP). Approximately 160,000 tests were performed between April 2009 and September 2010 on more than 20,000 samples, producing over three million results. Samples included domestic and imported dairy, eggs, honey, meat and poultry, fresh and processed fruit and vegetables, and maple products. This and otherCFIA studies are part of an ongoing testing regimen to help keep the food safety system strong for Canadian families.
The annual NCRMP tests foods of animal and plant origins for multiple chemical hazards, including residues of pesticides and veterinary drugs and environmental contaminants. Information obtained through this program allows the CFIA to identify violations and trends, gauge the effectiveness of policies and programs and develop strategic plans to minimize potential health risks to Canadians.
When elevated levels of chemical residues or metals are detected, Health Canada completes an assessment. Based on this assessment, the CFIA determines whether further action is needed. These actions may include notifying the producer or importer, additional inspections, further directed sampling, or product seizure and/or recall. All violations were assessed and appropriate follow-up action was pursued.
The consistently high compliance rates across all commodities tested in the 2009-2010 NCRMP, whether imported or domestic, are similar to previous years’ results. None of the chemical residue levels detected would pose a health concern to Canadians.
Further information on this study is available on the CFIA website.