Properties and determination of pesticides in fruits and vegetables
The intensive development of agriculture means that more and more toxic organic and inorganic compounds are entering the environment. Because of their widespread use, stability, selective toxicity and bioaccumulation, pesticides are among the most toxic substances contaminating the environment. They are particularly dangerous in fruit and vegetables, by which people are exposed to them. It is therefore crucial to monitor pesticide residues in fruit and vegetables using all available analytical methods. We set out the problems in the determination of organonitrogen and organophosphorus pesticides in samples of fruit and vegetables, including the complexity and the diversity of matrices in biological materials, and the very low level of pesticides present, as a result of which target analytes have to be isolated and then enriched prior to final determination. We discuss the various stages in the determination of pesticide residues in fruit and vegetables. We present results from the literature in the context of Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) of target pesticides in fruit and vegetable samples. We discuss the merits of the Quick, Easy, Cheap, Effective, Rugged, and Safe (QuEChERS) technique and two-dimensional gas chromatography.