Bloomberg News

Brazil Orange Growers to Halt Fungicide Use on U.S. Screening

February 07, 2012

Feb. 6 (Bloomberg) -- Orange-juice producers in Brazil, which supply about one in every six glasses drunk in the U.S., will stop using a fungicide that led shipments from the South American country to be detained, an industry group said.

Carbendazim, a fungus killer banned in U.S. groves, will be removed from a list of chemicals approved by Brazil’s orange- juice industry, the producers-run Fund for Citrus Plant Protection, known as Fundecitrus, said today in an e-mailed statement.

The fungicide, used to fight the black spot fungus in oranges, has been linked to liver tumors in animals. The U.S. started screening orange-juice imports last month after the Coca Cola Co., maker of Minute Maid, reported traces of carbendazim in shipments from Brazil.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration rejected twenty shipments from Brazil and Canada in past weeks after screening 86 samples from several countries. The banned juice tested positive for the fungicide at concentrations of 10 parts per billion or more, the FDA said Feb. 2.

Brazil is the world’s largest producer and exporter of orange juice.

--Editors: Carlos Caminada, Dale Crofts

To contact the reporter on this story: Lucia Kassai in Sao Paulo at lkassai@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Dale Crofts at dcrofts@bloomberg.net


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