The association’s president, José Osório, said that the study “should have taken into account the national data, published by the competent authorities, which are much more representative, impartial and credible”.

According to the study, Portuguese apples and pears are in second place in the ranking of the highest proportion of contaminated fruit in 2019.

In 85% of the Portuguese pears tested and in 58% of all the apples tested, contamination by dangerous pesticides was found.

AFA regretted the “very negative impact on the sector” caused by the news about this study.

In his view, the news resulted “from an unreliable report that did not take into account several important aspects, starting with a representative sample, either in number, or in collection points, MRLs [maximum waste limits] or even which ones or the methods of analysis and the laboratories used”.

“Domestic production has several controls, from the producer to the consumer, and these controls are carried out by various entities, governmental or not, but all certified for the purpose”, he guaranteed.