When producing salad mix, it's essential to know the classification for each commodity being grown to ensure agricultural chemicals are being used correctly
Every chemical that is registered for use on a commodity has a corresponding maximum residue limit (MRL) which is set by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) and Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ).
A MRL is the maximum concentration of a chemical residue that is legally permitted in or on a food, agricultural commodity or animal feed.
All lettuce varieties are not classified the same. There are three main MRL classifications for lettuce; lettuce leaf, lettuce head and leafy vegetables. Certain lettuce varieties also have their own individual classification.
All lettuce components are classified as 'leafy vegetables (including brassica leafy vegetables)'. Refer to the chart below for classifications. Iceberg lettuce is the only lettuce variety classified as 'lettuce, head'.
When choosing a chemical, check if the lettuce classification is listed on the label (note the label may only specify lettuce). If it's not on the label, check if there is a MRL listed for the commodity to be treated. Follow the product label directions and observe all relevant withholding periods and restraint statements before harvesting and combining the commodity with others to form the salad mix.
Visit the FSANZ website www.foodstandards.gov.au for commodity MRLs and to access the Food Standards Code.
|Component||Lettuce, leaf||Lettuce, head||Leafy vegetables||
|* If a product is registered or an APVMA permit exists for use of a chemical on a specific commodity, a MRL should exist|