Animal products residue monitoring programmes
Since the release of results from the above programmes on Monday 26 May 2004 the New Zealand Food Safety Authority has received requests for further information.
The information requested includes all results from the above programmes that were above the limit of detection and below the Maximum Residue Level. MPI did not release this information initially as these results are considered to be acceptable.
Please be reminded that a MRL is set at a level considerably below what which will cause health effects. These are very conservative limits that take into account uncertainty factors such as difference between species and differences between humans.
When considering the number of detections below the MRL it is important to consider that improved scientific testing means that the limit of detection for any chemical will decrease over time. This means that the number of detections may increase from year to year as smaller amounts can be measured.
This increase is therefore not considered to be of importance in terms of health risk. Rather it is a tribute to analytical science.
Results are collated by approved laboratories via an automatic database. The database automatically alerts MPI staff to any results that are above 50% of the established MRL.
Analyses are performed on a range of animal tissues– such as the liver. In all cases the tissue tested will be the tissue of highest accumulation for the specific chemical. This will over estimate the dietary intake or exposure to consumers because the meat consumed will contain considerably less than present in the liver. For example the ratio of chemical in a liver to meat is usually 10:1.
Products tested are usually held pending the results and if the result is found to be unacceptable the product will not enter the food supply.
Please also refer to the specific notes at the foot of each table.
Results from monitoring programmes dating back to 1999 will be available as soon as it becomes available.