Bush Admin to Public: What You Don't Know Won't Hurt You

The Bush administration found $700 billion to bail out the banks and $25 billion to bail out the automakers, but can't find $8 million to monitor the pesticide levels in our fruits, vegetables and field crops. It has cut the program that tests them.

According to the Chicago Tribune, "Data from the 18-year-old Agricultural Chemical Usage Program administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) were collected until this year, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) used the data to set safe levels of pesticides in food.

The information was also widely used by university and food-industry researchers, including a University of Illinois program to help farmers reduce the amount of pesticides they use."

Stephen Hedges continues:

"The program was launched in 1990 to answer congressional concerns over the use of the chemical daminozide, or Alar, on apples. But Mark Miller of USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service, which administered the program, said the program is too expensive.

The decision was criticized by researchers at the EPA and elsewhere who have come to rely on the data, which measure how much pesticide farmers apply to certain crops each year." ::Chicago Tribune

That is one good way to eliminate a problem: stop testing for it. Now why not end global warming by eliminating the testing of carbon dioxide levels?

More USDA Follies from TreeHugger:

Almond Growers Sue USDA
Study Finds USDA Child Nutrition Commodity Program Lacks Nutrition ...
USDA Waters Down Organic Standards
Tainted Meat? USDA Will Tell You. Some Day.

Tags: Agriculture | Farming | Food Safety

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