The Maltese Association of Parents of State School Students (MAPSSS) refers to the article published in the Times of Malta “High pesticide levels in some fruit and vegetables making way to consumers“.

It is very worrying for us consumers to learn that the fruit and vegetables that we consume may have high levels of pesticides due to the lengthy testing procedure abroad. This situation undermines the considerable effort at home and in schools to engage children in healthy eating habits and can have enormous implications on the short-term and long-term well being of the consumers.

Further more, it would be a shame if, after the introduction of the EU-funded voluntary School Fruit Scheme that rightly encourages the consumption of fruit and vegetables as part of a healthy diet, we find out that there is little control on the agricultural products distributed to our children.

In view of Malta’s National Strategy School Fruit & Vegetable Scheme 2014-17, the Maltese Association of Parents of State School Students believes that the investment in the School Fruit Scheme should be complemented by urgent efforts to regularise the testing of fruit and vegetables in Malta. MAPSSS expects that fruit and vegetables distributed to school children through the School Fruit Scheme, have the least possible pesticide residue and are absolutely safe for consumption in line with relevant EU legislation. Better still, the Scheme should opt to give children high quality integrated pest-managed fruit and vegetables.