Food Residues Surveillance Programme (FRSP)

2017 – 2019 Plant-based Foods Survey

Background

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) Food Residues Surveillance Programme (FRSP) was established in 2003 to investigate residues and contaminants in food. It is intended to cover foods sold in the New Zealand domestic market, including both imported foods and domestic produce. 

The programme has been renamed ‘Food Residues Survey Programme’ (FRSP) to better reflect the nature of the activities undertaken by the programme. 

Survey objectives and scope

MPI has commissioned a survey of plant-based foods available for sale on the New Zealand market.  We are collecting plant-based food samples and testing for pesticide residues. This survey intends to collect baseline data on agricultural chemical use and indications of good agricultural practices.  The FRSP does not target individual food producers or function as a ‘test and release’ tool for imported foods.  Instead, crops and foods that may present potential chemical risks are targeted in surveys.

MPI will commence sampling in August 2017 and continue through June 2019.  Sampling will include plant-based foods, produced in New Zealand and overseas, that are sold for domestic consumption. 

Targeted plant-based foods for 2017 - 2019

The survey will target a broad range of agricultural compounds registered for use in New Zealand on horticultural produce.  Typically, screening tests include between 200 – 500 different pesticides.  The survey is likely to include 60 samples of the following classifications*

List

Codex classifications

Proposed crops for 2017-2019 (depending on availability and seasonality)

1

Root and Tuber vegetables

Carrots

Turnips

Potatoes

swedes

kumara

2

Leafy vegetables

Watercress

Puha

Spinach bunch (not bagged leaves)

Endive

Asian greens (Boxthorn, Water spinach)

3

Brassica leafy vegetables

Broccoli,

Brussel sprouts

Cabbages (savoy, red, chinese)

Mustard greens

Kailan

 

4

Legume vegetables

Broad beans

Butter beans

Green beans

French beans

Snake or chinese beans, long beans

5

Fruiting vegetables, other than cucurbits

 

Peppers (Capsicums, Chillies)

Mushrooms

Corn on the cob

 

6

Stem vegetables

Asparagus 

Rhubarb

7

Pome fruits

Pears (Packham, Nashi, Yali, Anjou,)

Apples

Quince

8

Stonefruits

Plums (Cherry, Damson, Greengage, including prunes)

Peaches

Cherries

Nectarines

Apricots

9

Small fruits and berries

Blackberries

Blueberries

Boysenberries

Strawberries

raspberry

10

Citrus

Orange

Grapefruit

Lemon

Mandarins

Tangello

Limes

*Accordingly to CODEX classification of foods and animal feeds

Survey findings

MPI will follow up on:

  • domestic samples where residues exceed the applicable Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) set in the Food Notice:  Maximum Residue Levels for Agricultural Compounds, issued under the Food Act 2014 (NZ MRLs); and
  • domestic samples which indicate that agricultural compound products has not been applied in accordance with the Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines (ACVM) Act 1997; and
  • imported samples where residues exceed the Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) and Extraneous Maximum Residue Limits (EMRLs) for Pesticides under the current edition of the Codex Pesticides Residues in Food Online Database) or the Maximum Residue Limits for Veterinary Drugs in Food under the current edition of the Codex Veterinary Drug Residue in Food Online Database; and
  • Australian imported samples where residues exceed the MRLs under the Australia New Zealand Food Standards Code or the Codex MRLs or the NZ MRLs.

If the results of the sample testing identify food safety or public health issues, MPI may work with the industry, local councils, the Environmental Protection Authority, other government agencies or laboratories to address these issues.

Survey reports

MPI will release an annual survey report with the anonymised results and findings.  The report will cover survey activities carried out during the previous fiscal year and will be available on the MPI website in due course.