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A new reliable test for pesticides and toxins is developed

In laboratory tests on food and drinks contaminated by intent, the test revealed the presence of pesticides in five minutes
In laboratory tests on food and drinks contaminated by intent, the test revealed the presence of pesticides in five minutes
 

Researchers at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario (Canada), have developed a test that can detect in a few minutes the presence of even the smallest parts of toxins and pesticides.

The test, which takes the form of a strip of paper 10 cm long, changes color depending on the amount of chemicals in food. In laboratory tests on food and drinks contaminated by intent, the paper tape revealed the presence of pesticides in five minutes.

"This strip of paper could have many applications, especially in the food industry and agriculture, but it also can be used to test the possible presence of chemical weapons," said John Brennan, who led the research.

The test can detect the presence of organophosphate pesticides, banned in North America and Europe but still used in countries like India and China, said John Brennan, as well as toxic chemicals in water, or the Escherichia coli before they enter the food chain.

"The tests could be more useful in developing countries, in the market of imported fruits and vegetables, as well as in rural areas, for testing on-site, where the test equipment is not available, or where there is no electricity," said John Brennan in an interview. According to him, there remains a number of issues to resolve before the test is put into production, which could cost just $0.25 per strip.

 
 
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