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The Importance of Pesticide Testing in the Agriculture Industry

1. Advantages and disadvantages of using pesticides in agriculture

Pesticides get a lot of bad publicity.  And for good reasons the U.S, and many other countries have been working together to regulate and test for pesticides to ensure they will not harm our land, insects, birds, animals and ourselves.  But pesticides are here to stay because there are some benefits of pesticides. 

  • They protect crops from insects and other pests.  And they do such a good job that food production of major crops per acre has tripled since 1960.  
  • Another way to look at this advantage is that without pesticides we would lose up to 50% of our crops to these pests.  
  • All farmers use pesticides.  Even organic farmers use natural pesticides to increase their yields.
  • Nearly a billion people around the world go hungry every year.  If we want to reduce the terrible effects of world hunger then we must continue using pesticides to increase food security. 
  • The use of pesticides also lowers people’s exposure to dangerous microorganisms particularly in fruits and vegetables. 


At the same time, there are numerous disadvantages to the use of pesticides.

  • Particularly synthetic pesticides but also some natural pesticides are poisonous to birds, animals and humans.
  • They are known to have a range of adverse effects on human health.
  • These poisonous chemicals build up in the soil, water and food sources and have long term effects on the health of vital natural populations, including helpful species.  
  • A recent study has shown that pesticide use has caused our agricultural land to become 48 times more toxic to honeybees than it was 25 years ago.    

2. Brief overview about Pesticide testing

Chemical pesticides have been used for many decades. But in the 1960’s it was revealed that at least one of these chemicals, DDT, was causing tremendous harm to the environment and all living things. As a result DDT and other pesticides have been banned forever in the US and other countries. Laboratories work in conjunction with the EPA to help develop analytical methods for risk assessment of all pesticides. They also work to enforce projects by performing chemical and efficacy analyses when needed, by assisting with investigations into specific issues such as crop damage or analyses of illegal pesticide residues.

Leading laboratories are also asked to develop and use pesticide testing methods to identify even trace amounts of them in food, feed, water, and soil. The goal is for pesticide residue amounts in samples to be measured, including any significant chemical metabolites and degradates (break-down products).

Pesticide manufacturers are also required to develop environmental chemistry and residue analytical methods that they provide to the EPA as a requirement of product registration.

3. What will a Pesticide test show you

There are numerous reasons for pursuing pesticide testing methods on your soil, water or products.  Tests will show you whether your land is dangerous to build on, to raise crops on and/or needs remediation before moving forward with your plans.  This testing can also reveal similar issues with drinking water or stormwater draining from your property. In other cases it is vital to know if products grown in your soil retain any dangerous levels of chemicals that would be dangerous to people, livestock or the environment.

4. Importance of Pesticide testing in Agriculture Industry

The benefits of pesticides regulation and testing over the course of the past several decades have been clearly and firmly established. They have led to tremendous reductions in levels of dangerous chemicals in our air, soil, water, food, wildlife and human organs and bodies and improved the overall health of our environment and human lives. Continuing to follow these regulations and continuing a full slate of pesticide testing methods for our environment and products will help ensure the safety of human health as well as our most vital agricultural resources.

5. Why choose Torrent Laboratory for Pesticide testing?

Torrent Laboratory provides the region’s most advanced capabilities:

  • Fastest TATs in the industry
  • Gold standard certifications with California and the Department of Defense
  • Unrivaled technical and customer support
  • Unparalleled on-time performance
  • Impeccable quality
  • Competitive pricing

Torrent also offers the full array of pesticide testing methods which includes testing for organochlorine and organophosphorus pesticides and herbicides.