In 20 years Colombia has increased use of pesticides by 360%
Rice and tomato farmers use some of the most toxic pesticides in Colombia. A Universidad Nacional de Colombia (UNal) consultancy discovered that farmers apply up to ten different types of pesticides on their crops.Bogotá D. C., 17 de noviembre de 2015 — Agencia de Noticias UN-
Acute intoxication can produce acetylcholinesterase enzyme inhibition, acetylcholinesterase helps produce nervous impulses in the human body.
Pesticide poisoning is the second-most emergency care cases after drug intoxications in Colombia.
Although pesticides are beneficial chemical substances for agricultural foods, according to the World Bank, Colombia increased use of pesticides by 360% in 20 years.
This also increased the amount of poisoning in hospital emergency rooms for consuming pesticide tainted foods which have been inadequately handled during rinsing or cooking.
In face of this scenario UNal Faculty of Medicine Department of Toxicology Professor Diana Carolina Chávez, performed a consultancy along with the Ministry of Health and Social Protection to carry out a database exchange and review of the most foods consumed in Colombia as well as the pesticides applied to these crops and the toxicity of each active ingredient.
This project performed using information from the webpage of the Colombian Agricultural and Livestock Institute (ICA, for its Spanish acronym) and Colombian National Nutritional Situation Survey (ENSIN, for its Spanish acronym) discovered around ten high toxicity products which are used in high consumption foods such as rice and tomato.
Among the most relevant are carbamates and phosphorated based pesticides such as Mancozeb, which is used as a fungicide.
An acute intoxication due to unwanted release or use of elements impregnated with the substance can produce acetylcholinesterase enzyme inhibition, also known as AChE inhibition, the enzyme which produces nervous impulses and movement in the human body, thus altering the central nervous system, causing convulsions and difficulty to speak and walk.
According to Chávez, the amount of pesticides used in Colombia is very high; this is due to farmer ignorance who consider that the more pesticides they apply to their crops, production will be better.
“Country folk inadequately use pesticides, not only due to lack of information but also to lack of support from authorities which do not provide adequate training to stop the issue,” said Chávez.
For this reason it is important that the academia and health authorities work together to support farmers and country folk in use of pesticides.(Por: Fin/VMH/DMH