Sources, Hortibiz, from The New Indian Express
Researchers in India have come up with a do-it-yourself solution to protect yourself from poison that might be on your plate. Mix 160 ml of acetic acid with 4 grams of baking soda and concentrated juice of 4 lemons in 4 litres of water. Use this to was your vegetables to ensure that pesticides are removed.
A student of Professor Jayashankar Telangana State Agricultural University (PJTSAU) conducted a study to find out efficacy of tap water and various liquid solutions that can be made at home to remove pesticide residues from vegetables.
Comparison of the efficacy of these methods revealed that the solution of acetic acid, baking soda, lemon juice and water in right proportions was much more efficient in removing the pesticide residues compared to the use of only tap water.
The study by Sudhakar S Kelageri of PJTSAU published recently in the Journal of Entomology and Zoology Studies reports that dipping tomatoes for 10 minutes in a solution of 160 ml of acetic acid with 4 grams of baking soda and lemon juice from 4 lemons in 4 litres of water followed by washing off the tomatoes with tap water, could remove pesticides residues in the range of 55-76 percent.
This formulation is developed by All India Network Project on Pesticide Residues at PJTSAU and is named as ‘Veggy wash’. Compared to Veggy wash, the efficacy of washing vegetables with only tap water was just around 17-39 per cent.
Effectiveness of Veggy wash was checked on five pesticides - Dimethoate, lambda-Cyhalothrin, Flubendiamide and Profenophos, which are widely used by farmers on tomato, a vegetable that finds high usage in Indian cooking as well as in salads for raw consumption. While the published study was on tomato, these five pesticides find wide usage in other vegetables as well.
It was found that Veggy wash could remove 76.7 per cent of dimethoate, 68.8 percent of lambda-Cyhalothrin, 55.1 per cent of phosalone, 65.3 per cent of flubendiamide and 75.8 per cent of profenofos. It may be mentioned here that profenofos is widely used on vegetables in India although it is not recommended for usage on vegetables by Central Insecticide Board and Registration Committee and it is listed as ‘moderately hazardous’ by World Health Organization. Another effective solution listed in the study was 4 percent acetic acid solution prepared by mixing 160 ml of acetic acid in 4 litres of water.