Highly toxic pesticide found in cardamom; difficult to remove residues
Kottayam: The presence of 'highly toxic' pesticides has been traced in cardamom. According to the latest report of the Department of Agriculture on pesticide residue testing, the pesticide 'Cypermethrin' has been found in cardamom. The report itself stated that this is a highly toxic pesticide and it was not recommended by the authorities for cardamom.
The presence of another highly toxic pesticide 'lambda cyhalothrin', which was not recommended, was earlier detected in cardamom during a test conducted at the Vellayani Agricultural College Lab. Residues of the Quinalphos pesticide recommended for cardamom cultivation have also been found to be present in cardamom but in a higher quantity than allowed.
Experiments have started at the Vellayani lab to residue of pesticides that could severely affect cardamom exports. The Department of Agriculture has directed that farmers should not buy and use pesticides illegally, except through approved depots. Pesticides should be distributed only on the recommendation of the Agriculture Officer. The Department of Agriculture will conduct awareness classes for the farmers on this.