FDA: Orange juice recall isn’t warranted

Yet Center for Science in the Public Interest can’t pass up the opportunity to fearmonger.

The Washington Post reports,

Many of the orange juice samples tested by the Food and Drug Administration in recent weeks do not contain measurable amounts of a banned fungicide tied to oranges from Brazil, the federal government announced on Friday.

The FDA started the testing on Jan. 4, after Coca-Cola told the agency that it had found traces of the fungicide carbendazim when it tested samples of its orange juice brands, which include Minute Maid and Simply Orange. The company also said it had found low levels of the pesticide in its competitors’ orange juice brands and in certain orange juice concentrates that were not on store shelves.

While many countries use carbendazim on a variety of crops, its use on oranges is prohibited in the United States, according to the Environmental Protection Agency. The fungicide’s registration expired in 2008, and no company applied to re-register it…

Caroline Smith DeWaal, a director at the Center for Science in the Public Interest, said the FDA handled this particular matter appropriately given the evidence that carbendazim does not cause a public health risk at the levels reported in orange juice.

“But it does point out the real challenge FDA has in managing the safety of imported products,” DeWaal said. “This is more of a warning sign of a problem with how FDA regulates imports.”

Coke detected the pesticide residues in routine testing and reported it to the FDA. Sounds like the system worked perfectly.