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US: Brazil, Canada orange juice tests positive for fungicide

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The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has detained 11 Brazilian and Canadian orange juice shipments, following positive tests for the fungicide carbendazim.

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In a statement on Friday (27 January), the FDA said that it had collected 80 import samples in total. Of these, the watchdog said 29 samples, from Canada, Mexico, Honduras, Costa Rica, Lebanon, Turkey and Belize, tested negative. However, the FDA found 11 samples that tested positive; six were shipments from Canada and five were from Brazil.

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.

None of the positive shipments had more than 52 parts per billion of the chemical, the FDA said on Friday, but the agency has said that any shipment containing more than 10 parts per billion would be rejected.

"Before being detained, each sample was tested twice, and at least one of those samples tested positive," the FDA said in a statement. "Two samples had one result below 10 ppb, but a second sample tested at 10 ppb or greater. Testing of samples from domestic manufacturers remains in process at our labs. Results will be posted next week."

Shipments pending are from countries including Mexico, Canada, Russia, Belize, Trinidad & Tobago, and the Dominican Republic.


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