Newspaper reports about pesticide levels in ready-made food items are often seen these days and some states have banned these products. Debate in groups the need for such bans.
What do you think would be the source of pesticides in these food items? Could pesticides get into our bodies from this source through other food products too?
Discuss what methods could be applied to reduce our intake of pesticides.
Some harmful chemicals may enter the bodies through the food chain. E.g. Pesticides and other chemicals are washed down into the soil or water. From the soil, plants absorb them. From the water bodies, aquatic plants & animals take up them. Thus they enter the food chain.
The non-degradable chemicals get accumulated at each trophic level. This is called biological magnification. Thus cereals, vegetables, fruits & meat contain pesticide residues. Their concentration is maximum in human body because humans occupy the top level in any food chain.
Methods to reduce intake of pesticides:
o Minimise the use of chemical pesticides.
o Wash fruits & vegetables thoroughly before use.
o Use organic fruits and vegetables.