Objectives Occupational exposure to pesticides in farm-related activities has been regularly associated with an increased risk of developing some chronic diseases. Otherwise, many agrochemicals products have been used for many decades in agriculture and consequently the retrospective pesticides exposure assessment is complex. The Matphyto program has been set up to overcome this problem and aims at developing crop exposure matrices CEMs to pesticides. Banana crop exposure is especially studied in the French West Indies where the chlordecone, an organochlorine pesticide suspected to have major health effects, was used during 20 years.
Methods The banana CEM is a database which lists the use of pesticides in banana production since the 60’s in Guadeloupe and Martinique. To develop it, we (1) conduct a bibliographic search, (2) combine heterogeneous data collected, (3) define three indicators of use for each pesticide, period and area: the probability, the frequency and the intensity. We work with a network of partners like researchers, agricultural institutes, Banana growers unions…
Results Since 60’s, 90 active substances from 45 chemical families have been used, with around 1/3 of insecticides/nematicides, 1/3 of fungicides and 1/3 of herbicides. Since the 60’s, the annual probability of farms using nematicides and soil insecticides is between 50 to 90%. Since the 70’s, the probability of fungicides use against sigatoka and post-harvest diseases is almost 100%. The herbicides are largely used since mid-70’s. Furthermore, because of the tropical climate, protective equipment is not well adapted and agricultural workers may be significantly exposed to pesticides.
Conclusion In the French West Indies 60% of the permanent agricultural assets are concerning by banana crops. Our MCE will be used to assess pesticides exposure in epidemiologic studies (i.e. the “chlordecone cohort” studying farm workers using chlordecone), for occupational health surveillance and for occupational medicine, particularly for older exposures.
Statistics from Altmetric.com
If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.