Last month, the US watchdog detained 11 Brazilian and Canadian orange juice shipments

Last month, the US watchdog detained 11 Brazilian and Canadian orange juice shipments

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has said that around two-third of orange juice samples have tested negative for the banned fungicide carbendazim.

In an update yesterday (9 February), the FDA said it has collected samples from 99 shipments of orange juice or orange juice concentrate into the US. Of these, 63 have tested negative for carbendazim, to date, while 46 shipments have been released.

The FDA said that it still has 13 samples awaiting tests, but it did not detail which countries these samples were from.

Last month, the US watchdog detained 11 Brazilian and Canadian orange juice shipments, following positive tests for the fungicide. The fungicide is used legally in Brazil to combat an orange tree mould called black spot, but banned in the US.

This week, Brazil's orange juice industry removed carbendazim from its list of recommended fungicides for producers, following the suspension of some shipments by the FDA.

The FDA said it continues to block orange juice shipments into the US without testing for carbendazim. It added: "Based on all results we have seen to date, we remain confident that orange juice in the US may be consumed without concerns about its safety due to the possible presence of such residues."

Other nations have been slow to follow the FDA's lead. In the European Union, the European Commission is awaiting US test results before deciding whether to take any action.