• "Food Matters Newsletter, June 2013....."
  • "Details of some resource persons on organic farming, state-wise".
  • Pesticides like Mancozeb and Captan, classified as Probable Human Carcinogen (US EPA) continue in India.
  • India has 67 pesticides that have been banned or restricted in other countries.
  • Nearly 40% of pesticides registered in India belong to Class I and Class II WHO categories of acute toxicity.
  • Studies show that less than 0.1% of pesticides for pest control fall on target insects. Rest dissipates into the atmosphere, contaminating our resources.
  • Farming can indeed be done profitably without synthetic pesticides – research proves this; experience on millions of acres shows this.
  • In Andhra Pradesh, 1000s of farmers have adopted Non Pesticidal Management of crops through a government programme called Community Managed Sustainable Agriculture.

India For Safe Food...

...is a movement for change amongst Indian farmers, consumers and the government to ensure that all Indians have access to safe food, devoid of toxic substances. This movement is being spearheaded by ASHA (Alliance for Sustainable & Holistic Agriculture), an informal network of hundreds of organizations and individuals across twenty states of India and we consider you to be part of this movement!

The Latest Updates

10 ways to find out if your food is organic


June 15, 2014 02:50 PM


DNA India, Tired of eating stuff laden with chemicals but don't know how to go about choosing right? Jayashree Joshi Eashwar, co-founder, Dubdengreen, and Mridu Mahajan Pogula, co-founder, Nirvaaha Delhi, put together a 10-point primer to help you gauge whether the food you are picking up is organic. Kavita Devgan reports




If it is naturally and organically grown, no two items will look identical... ever! It's just not possible to find two things that look absolutely alike in nature. No two leaves of the same mango tree will ever look 100% alike. Similarly, each apple, mango or even grain will always look different from another. Their colour, shape, structure will never be uniform. There will, for instance, be different shades of yellow in your moong dal instead of the uniformly bleached yellow of the regular packaged dal.


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Punjab farmers try religious route to shun pesticides


June 15, 2014 12:00 AM


Ask religious institutions to grow organic crops and accept organic crops as donation for langars


In Punjab, people follow a tradition of donating a part of their food produce to gurudwaras for feeding the poor


Gurlal Singh and Jagdish Singh, farmers from Punjab, say the practice of ensuring food security through langars may actually be poisoning people because of the pesticide-laden good grown in the state


In Pandori Ragsangh village in Amritsar, farmer leader Gurlal Singh takes a large sip of hot milk and asks fellow farmer, Jagdish Singh, about the “poison.” “This year, there is too much of poison,” Jagdish replies. It takes a while to understand that the farmers are discussing lethal pesticides used to grow wheat. While Gurlal and Jagdish have grown organic crops for family consumption on patches of their fields, they feel guilty while donating pesticide-laced food grains for langars or daswants.


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Lab testing of potatoes, green chillies before export mandatory: APEDA

June 13, 2014 08:00 AM


FnB News - Libin Chacko Kurian, Mumbai: Due to the ban imposed by Saudi Arabia on Indian green chillies and Russia’s displeasure about contaminated potatoes from India, the Agricultural and Processed Food Export Development Authority (APEDA) imposed mandatory laboratory testing of exporting items.


With effect from May 30, 2014, Saudi Arabia had banned the import of green chillies from India due to the presence of a higher-than-permissible level of pesticide residues. In the past, there have been several reported instances of contaminated green chilli consignments in Saudi Arabia.


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Will educate people about pesticides in food: Govt to HC

May 22, 2014 01:48 AM


The Indian Express - Aneesha Mathur | New Delhi, The Delhi government had claimed that it did not have adequate laboratories and could currently test for only 28 varieties of pesticides.


The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has issued draft regulations for food imports and may soon make it mandatory for importers of food and vegetables to produce test reports from authorised labs to ensure pesticide remains in fruits and vegetables were within prescribed limits.


With the Delhi High Court monitoring the issue of pesticides in food in a PIL, the Central government has filed a status report on the measures recommended by an expert committee created on court orders to suggest methods to contain the problem.


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Saudi Arabia bans import of Indian chili peppers

May 09, 2014 09:37 PM


Zee News - Riyadh: Saudi Arabia, the fifth-largest importer of fresh vegetables from India, has banned the import of Indian chili due to the presence of high pesticide residues in it, media reported Friday.


"We have been informed about the Saudi ministry of agriculture`s decision to ban chili pepper beginning May 30," Arab News quoted Surinder Bhagat, second secretary of politics and commerce at the Indian embassy here, as saying.


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Pesticide scam exposed by Khemka to be probed


March 29, 2014 12:00 AM


The Hindu - NITIN SETHI - NEW DELH, Parliamentary committee’s recommendation a shot in the arm for Haryana IAS officer


In a rare act, the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Agriculture has come to whistleblower Ashok Khemka’s support, ordering a Central government inquiry into the pesticide scam that the Haryana IAS officer uncovered.


The committee also stood by the views of the IAS officer in another scam — in the purchase of seeds — again highlighted by Mr. Khemka. The Haryana government continues to battle against this.


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New French law will ban non-agricultural use of pesticides from 2020

February 06, 2014 12:00 AM


The French parliament has adopted a law which prohibits the private or public use of pesticides from 2020 in green areas, forests or public space.


The law which is to start from 1 January 2020 for private individuals and the public excludes the use of pesticides on railways, airport runways or motorways.


From 1 January 2022, it will be prohibited to place pesticides for non-professional use on the market, to be sold, used or in the possession of someone. Anyone using or found with banned pesticide products could be imprisoned for up to six months with a 30,000 EUR fine. These prohibitions do not apply to the necessary measures such as the destruction and prevention of the spread of pests.


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Pesticides affect unborn babies' brain


December 18, 2013 05:41 PM


The Times of India - ANI, Pesticides are not only responsible for a decline in bee populations but they can also affect human health and harm the brain development of unborn babies, according to European safety experts.


Researchers at the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) found that pesticide imidacloprid was associated with brain shrinkage, and reduced activity in nerve signals in newborn rats, while the other, acetamiprid led to reduced weight and reaction times, the Independent reported.


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Fresh veggies exports to Saudi Arabia under threat


November 29, 2013 12:27 AM


Business Standard - Dilip Kumar Jha | Mumbai, The fifth largest importer finds pesticides residues higher than permissible level, warns to take action soon


Saudi Arabia, the fifth-largest importer of fresh vegetables from India, has said pesticide residues in the commodity are higher than permissible levels. It has threatened to take strong action in the near future.


In an advisory to the Agricultural and Processed Food Products Export Development Authority (Apeda), the government of Saudi Arabia said high levels of pesticide residues were detected in two consignments of green chilli. "It has been brought to the notice of authorities of KSA (Kingdom of Saudi Arabia) that in some recent consignments of vegetables from India, there have been interceptions of higher than permissible levels of residues of pesticides. If the situation persists, the government of KSA will take strong action in the near future," the advisory said.


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Plates loaded with pesticides

November 08, 2013 05:50 AM


The Times of India - Garima Prasher | TNN - BANGALORE: Probably it's time to take a closer look at what's on your platter. Cypermethrin, heptachlor, quinalphos, aldrin, chlorodane, dichlorvas, cypermethrin \97 these banned pesticides could well be a part of your regular diet. Okras, leafy green cabbages and other vegetables, bananas or oranges and apples that you so relish may be overloaded with some of these harmful pesticides.


A study by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India under the Union agriculture ministry threw up some unpalatable facts. Common food items contain banned pesticides in quantities a thousand times more than the permissible limits. The findings are based on random samples collected from across the country.


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Pesticide scan on store food

October 22, 2013 12:00 AM


The Telegraph India - OUR LEGAL CORRESPONDENT - New Delhi, The Supreme Court today directed all states and Union territories to conduct periodic checks on the markets within their territories for high levels of pesticides and insecticides in the foodstuff they sell.


A two-judge bench hearing a public interest litigation agreed with the Centre that the various food safety laws did cover all the areas of concern mentioned by the petitioner, but added: “The question is only with regard to their enforcement.”


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Pesticides found in cooked food


September 25, 2013 08:49 AM


Deccan Chronicle - Hyderabad - Amar Tejaswi, As long as farmers continue to use pesticides, it will be hard to avoid consuming them.


While it is known that pesticide residues are found in raw vegetables and crops, new rese-arch has shown that even cooked food has residues of pesticides.


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Pesticide residue found in rice

August 24, 2013 04:05 PM


The Hindu - THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, Excessive amounts of Malathion, a general use pesticide, have been detected in a rice sample collected for inspection from the Food Corporation of India godown at Valiyathura here.


Traces of uric acid, indicating presence of pests, were also found in three to four samples, of a total of nine samples that were collected in raids conducted on August 1.


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‘Expedite withdrawal of hazardous pesticides’

August 02, 2013 12:00 AM


The Hindu - NEW DELHI, AARTI DHAR, Chapra incident an important reminder, says the United Nations organisation


The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) on Thursday said the death of 23 children at Chapra in Bihar after eating school meal contaminated with monocrotophos was an important reminder to speed up the withdrawal of highly hazardous pesticides from markets in the developing countries.


Monocrotophos is an organophosphorus pesticide considered highly hazardous by FAO and World Health Organisation (WHO).


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The poison pill in India's search for cheap food


July 28, 2013 11:57 AM


DNA India - Agency: Reuters, In the school tragedy, police suspect the children's lunch was cooked in oil that was stored in a used container of monocrotophos.


Nearly a decade ago, the government ruled out a ban on the production and use of monocrotophos, the highly toxic pesticide that killed 23 children this month in a Bihar village school providing free lunches under the government-sponsored mid-day meal programme.


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