Food production only makes sense if it meets the expectations and needs of the consumer. This is often already a basic condition for the producer to obtain the expected unit price of the product and, as a result, the financial stability of the farm. Consumers have differing requirements, which the processing industry, or intermediary companies, try to meet.
Among other things, the requirements may be for above-standard residue requirements for plant protection products in general, or the non-use of specific chemical groups, or in strictly defined substances in reduced quantities. A special case is organic production, where the use of a limited range of plant protection products is allowed: gov.pl/web/rolnictwo/kontrola-i-certyfikacja.
The testing of residues of plant protection products in crops and food is carried out in Poland by certified laboratories belonging to the European Rapid Alert System for Food and Feed (RASFF).
The basic act governing food safety in the European Union is Regulation No 178/2002 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 January 2002, which lays down the general principles governing food and feed, in particular their safety, at the Community and national level, establishing the European Food Safety Authority and laying down procedures in this area. Part of ensuring food safety is analysing the presence of plant protection products in agricultural crops and food. Evaluation of the analytical results obtained is based on the list of maximum residue levels (MRLs) for plant protection products in: Regulation (EC) No 396/2005 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 23 February 2005 on maximum residue levels of pesticides in or on food and feed of plant and animal origin. Current European Community maximum residue levels for pesticides are also published at: eur-lex.europa.eu/legal-content/PL/TXT/HTML/?uri=LEGISSUM:l21289 .
The presence of plant protection product residues in food raises concerns and even objections among consumers. In this situation, it is worth educating food consumers that plant protection products are like medicines necessary for the proper development of plants and to obtain a crop from which safe food is produced. See: youtu.be/TYtDqguzadk .