Do CCA treated support stakes cause increased arsenic level in crops?
Li Zhaobang, Su Haitao, Liang Linqing
Trial of using CCA-C treated eucalypts stakes for supporting banana plants in Guangdong Province, China, began in 1998 and later it was expanded as a demonstration program of a joint International Tropical Timber Organization–Chinese Government timber preservation project in 2000. The greatest concern was whether the crop would be contaminated by the preservatives, arsenic in particular. Data from four years tracking analysis of bananas collected from the demonstration plots indicated that the arsenic levels were not significantly higher than the levels found in plants supported by untreated stakes. The arsenic content in bananas supported by preservative treated stakes was well below the level specified in food standards of China. Similar results were obtained from a trial of tomatoes and garden peas supported with treated eucalypts and round bamboo posts in pottery pots.