US: FDA clears five countries for orange juice imports
The FDA has collected 45 import orange juice samples in total
The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has cleared orange juice imports from five countries, following negative tests for the fungicide carbendazim.
In a statement on Friday (20 January), the FDA said it had collected 45 import samples in total. Of these, the watchdog said 19 samples, from Canada, Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica and Belize, were found to be "non-violative".
However, the FDA said that 26 samples are "pending analysis and/or under compliance review". It did not state which countries' imports were still under review.
Earlier this month, the FDA suspended shipments of imported orange juice after The Coca-Cola Co found carbendazim in its supplies. The watchdog is carrying out tests for the fungicide, which is used legally in Brazil to combat an orange tree mould called black spot, but banned in the US.
The agency has said it will reject shipments in excess of its 'ten parts per billion' detectable limit.
Since the FDA's alert, the European Commission has said it is reviewing the US testing of orange juice imports from Brazil.
Brazil accounts for around 85% of orange juice global exports.
Last week, PepsiCo said it had decided "some months ago" to return to using only oranges from Florida in its Tropicana Pure Premium juices, while Coca-Cola confirmed to just-drinks that it sources "a significant amount" of its orange juice for the US from Florida.
Ray Rowlands of Drinksinfo says progress is surprisingly slow in the soft drinks market's flavour mix, as cola and orange continue to dominate ...
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