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Contaminated peppers also in other supermarkets
The scandal of pesticide-contaminated vegetables in discounters continues. After the supermarket chain "Lidl" recalled the "Spanish paprika mix" (consisting of red and yellow peppers) contaminated with ethephon at the weekend, it became known that other chains were also selling contaminated vegetables. The environmental protection organization "Greenpeace" reports that Spanish peppers were sold in the supermarkets of the "Netto" and "Tengelmann" groups, for which the Ethephon maximum values were exceeded. The net market chain also reacted now and also recalled the stressed peppers from the sales markets. As a spokeswoman for the company said, the affected peppers were removed from the range in two markets. Other branches are not affected, as the Netto group assured. Anyone who has already purchased the contaminated goods can return them to all sales outlets for a refund of the purchase price. The Tengelmann company initially did not want to comment in detail on the allegations made by Greenpeace. However, one wanted to get to the bottom of the matter and carry out checks, as a spokeswoman in Mühlheim an der Ruhr said.
The use of Ethephon is by no means prohibited. The pesticide is used as a growth regulator of fruits and vegetables. Among other things, the substance causes plants to grow faster and the ripening process to start faster. Treatment with pesticides makes the harvest more efficient and increases the harvest volume. The paprika mix is available in three different colors. The peppers are red, yellow and green. So that this mix can be sold in the colors, the food manufacturers helped with the chemistry, as an expert from Greenpeace confirmed.
The growth regulator's maximum values were exceeded
In a total of 29 samples, the environmental organization Greenpeace had determined that the legal maximum values had been exceeded. According to the environmentalists, the acute reference dose was even exceeded for one sample. This means that from this value there is an acute health risk, even if the vegetables are only eaten once. Overdosing the plant growth regulator can lead to health damage such as skin irritation and mucous membrane irritation if the toxic maximum amount is overdosed.
Consumers can check loads themselves Greenpeace provides a helpful note so that consumers can check whether the goods sold are contaminated. If there are "green shades" on the fruit, there may be an ethephon load. It was only on Saturday that the Lidl group recalled the “Spanish Paprika Mix” (lot number L-01-05 TUTW) from the markets in the federal states of North Rhine-Westphalia in Lower Saxony because of too high ethephon values. Consumers can return the affected goods for a refund of the sales price. (sb)
Greenpeace finds pollutants in peppers
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Image: dreimirk30 / pixelio.de