Sudbury Soils Study confirms safety of local foods
SUDBURY, ON – In response to recent community questions about locally grown foods, Dr. Chris Wren is reassuring Greater Sudbury residents about the safety of local fruit and vegetables. Dr. Wren is Director of the SARA Group that conducted the Sudbury Human Health Risk Assessment (HHRA) released last May. He confirmed that the Study findings did not show any unacceptable health risk to residents associated with local food consumption.
“The HHRA was extremely thorough,” said Dr. Wren. “As part of the extensive data collection, we sampled roughly 90 residential and commercial sites to get local fruit and vegetable information from across the Greater Sudbury area. This produce was analyzed for the six chemicals of concern: arsenic, cobalt, copper, lead, nickel and selenium. We then had the benefit of information directly from Sudbury, which makes the Study even more meaningful to area residents. The results indicated that exposure to these chemicals through the consumption of local produce poses no unacceptable risk.”
Local produce was found to contain metal levels in some cases higher than supermarket produce. These local levels were taken into account by the detailed HHRA and the conclusion remains that local produce does not pose an unacceptable risk.
“We should all be reassured that local data were used in the HHRA. Inputting these data into the HHRA analysis tells us that the consumption of local produce poses no unacceptable health risk,” said Dr. Penny Sutcliffe, Sudbury & District Medical Officer of Health.
The Health Unit reminds everyone that it is always important to thoroughly clean all fruit and vegetables before eating.
“Safe, nutritious and accessible food is an essential part of healthy living. The promotion of healthy eating and consumption of local produce is a big part of the work we do every day,” said Dr. Sutcliffe. “We work on a number of local food initiatives such as the development of community gardens. We are also very proud of our partnership with Sudbury Food Connections,” she added.
Information about nutrition and food safety can be found on the Sudbury & District Health Unit’s website at www.sdhu.com. Information about the Sudbury Soils Study Human Health Risk Assessment can be found at www.sudburysoilsstudy.com. Questions and comments may also be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org
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