Who doesn’t enjoy a bag of fresh sweet cherries on a hot summer day? Cherry harvest in the US spans from the mid-end of April until late August, depending on the production region. The 2023 cherry season is expected to be another fruitful one, with high-quality sweet cherries produced in the primary production regions of California, Oregon, Washington, and Michigan.
Aside from domestic sales, these states contribute to most of the country’s cherry exports, with the Pacific Northwest exporting the majority of sweet cherries produced in the US in 2022. As a major exporter of fruits and veggies worldwide, US growers/packers/shippers need to evaluate the risk of sending their products to another market. One way to evaluate and mitigate risk is to ensure your product is MRL compliant.
A Maximum Residue Limit (MRL) is the highest level of pesticide residue that can legally be present in or on food (or feed) when those pesticides are applied directly to a crop. These limits are enforced and set by a government agency or regulating body in various countries, including some of the most lucrative markets. For example, in the US, the EPA establishes MRLs, and the FDA regulates them.
This is where third-party lab testing can play a pivotal role. Analyzing a product for a broad scope of pesticide residues helps the industry gauge compliance and mitigate risk before exports. Still, it also helps support sound decisions to capitalize on sales in various markets.
AGQ Labs offers a comprehensive pesticide residue screen covering over 570 active ingredients with a turnaround time of under 48 hours. This allows our customers to make educated decisions about their products and the markets they target.
With extensive experience and expertise, our Laboratory, Food Safety, and Agronomy teams are here to help provide solutions for the industry.
Please get in touch with our Food Safety and Agronomy Services Department with any questions.