Residue levels of pesticides in nuts and risk assessment for consumers

Main Article Content

S. Aydin
M. Ulvi


nuts, pesticide, residue, risk assessment


The residue levels of 227 pesticides were analyzed in nuts (dried figs, dried apricots, raisins, walnuts, pistachios, hazelnuts, almonds, peanuts, dates, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, white chickpeas and yellow chickpeas). The extraction of the samples was performed by using QuEChERS method, and the residue analyses were performed with LCMS/MS, GC-MS, GC-MS/MS. The results were evaluated according to the regulations of European Union and Turkish Food Codex (TFC), and a risk assessment for consumers was evaluated. At least one type of pesticide residue was detected in 29% of the samples. Thiacloprid in 4 pistachio and imidacloprid in 3 pumpkin seed, exceeded the maximum residue limit value given in the TFC. Trifluralin which is located in the list of prohibitted pesticides was detected in 9 pumpkin seed samples. The pesticides of chlorpyriphos, cypermethrin and chlorpyrifos-methyl were determined to pose an acute and chronic risk for children and adults. The target hazard quotient for all of the detected pesticides was calculated as <1. The Hazard Index value was determined as 0.264 for adults and 0.156 for children. When the amount of pesticide that people have with the consumption of other foodstuffs is also taken into consideration, people could be exposed to both acute and chronic health risks.

Abstract 232 | PDF Downloads 112


Bedük, F., Aydin, M.E., Aydin, S., Tekinay, A. and Bahadir, M., 2017. Pesticide pollution in soil and wheat: risk assessment of contaminated food consumption. Fresenius Environmental Bulletin 26(3): 2330-2339.
Dietary Guidelines for Turkey, 2004, Hacettepe University, Turkey. Available at:
EL-Saeid, M.H and AL-Dosari, S.A., 2010, Monitoring of pesticide residues in Riyadh dates by SFE, MSE, SFC, and GC techniques. Arabian Journal of Chemistry 3(3): 179-186.
Emami, A., Mousavi, Z., Ramezani, V., Shoeibi, S., Rastegar, H., Amirahmadi, M. and Emami, I., 2017, Residue levels and risk assessment of pesticides in pistachio nuts in Iran. Iranian Journal of Toxicology 11(2): 1-6.
Food and Agriculture Organisation / World Health Organistation (FAO/WHO), 1992. Meeting on Pesticide Residues (JMPR). Pesticide residues in food. Report of the 1992 Joint FAO/WHO Meeting of Experts, Rome, Italy, pp. 21-30.
Food and Agriculture Organisation / World Health Organistation (FAO/WHO), 2000. Pesticide residues in food. Report of the 2000 Joint FAO/WHO Meeting of Experts. September 20-29, 2000. Geneva, Switzerland.
Food and Agriculture Organisation / World Health Organistation (FAO/WHO), 2003. Pesticide residues in food. Report of the 2003 Joint FAO/WHO Meeting of Experts. September 15-24, 2003. Geneva, Switzerland.
Food and Agriculture Organisation / World Health Organistation (FAO/WHO), 2006. Pesticide residues in food. Report of the 2006 Joint FAO/WHO Meeting of Experts. October 3-12, 2006. Rome, Italy.
Jan, F.A., Ishaq, M., Khan, S., Ihsanullah, I., Ahmad, I. and Shakirullah, M., 2010, A comparative study of human health risks via consumption of food crops grown on wastewater irrigated soil (Peshawar) and relatively clean water irrigated soil. Journal of Hazardous Materials 179: 612-621.
Khan, K., Lu, Y., Khan, H., Ishtiaq, M., Khan, S., Waqas, M., Wei, L. and Wang, T., 2013, Heavy metals in agricultural soils and crops and their health risks in swat, district, northern Pakistan. Food Chemical Toxicology 58: 449-455.
Liu, Y., Shen, D., Li, S., Ni, Z., Ding, M., Ye, C. and Tang, F., 2016, Residue levels and risk assessment of pesticides in nuts of China. Chemosphere 144: 645-651.
Mahmood, A., Malik, R.N., Li, J. and Zhang, G., 2014, Human health risk assessment and dietary intake of organochlorine pesticides through air, soil and food crops (wheat and rice) along two tributaries of river Chenab, Pakistan. Food Chemical Toxicology 71: 17-25.
Özkan, A., 2015. Determination of pesticide residues in some oilseeds and nuts using LC-MS/Ms analysis. Fresenius Environmental Bulletin 24(2): 615-620.
Paya, P., Anastassiades, M., Mack, D., Sigalova, I., Tasdelen, B., Oliva, J. and Barba, A., 2007. Analysis of pesticide residues using the Quick Easy Cheap Effective Rugged and Safe (QuEChERS) pesticide multiresidue method in combination with gas and liquid chromatography and tandem mass spectrometric detection. Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 389: 1697-1714.
Poulsen, M.E. and Andersen, J.H., 2003. Results from the monitoring of pesticide residues in fruit and vegetables on the Danish market, 2000-01. Food Additives and Contaminants 20(8): 742-757.
Serrano, R., Simal-Julian, A., Pitarch, E., Hernandez, F., Varo, I. and Navarro, J.C., 2004. Biomagnification study on organochlorine compouns in marine aquaculture. Environmental Science Technology 38(4): 1262-1314.
Tatl?, Ö., 2006, Determination of pesticide residue levels in some fresh fruits, vegetables and dried food products of the Aegean region. MSc-thesis, Çukurova University, Adana, Turkey.
Turkish Food Codex (TFC), 2018, Maximum admissible residue limits for pesticides. Republic of Turkey Ministry of Food, Agriculture and Livestock. Available at:
Yu, R., Liu, Q., Liu, J., Wang, Q. and Wang, Y., 2016, Concentrations of organophosphorus pesticides in fresh vegetables and related human health risk assessment in Changchun, Northeast China. Food Control 60: 353-360.