This is with reference to the letter `Cola controversy' (

Business Line

, August 11): The author talks about pesticide residues in cereals, vegetables and fruits, and not just in colas.

While that is true, we should not forget that while we can live without drinking carbonated beverages, we cannot do without the rest.

To quote from a study by

Down To Earth

magazine, which published the results of the test on cola and other carbonated drinks for pesticides in its latest issue: "... we have no space in our food-poison trade-off for non-essential and non-nutritive intake.

Therefore, while fruit juices, which have a nutritive value, can be assigned a pesticide quota, soft drinks cannot, because they have no nutritive value."

Rajesh Gajra

Mumbai

Certain soft-drinks were recently banned in some States, particularly in and around hospitals and schools, as they have been found to contain dangerous levels of pesticides. But why this partial ban?

There should have been either a total ban or no ban at all. And the government must go to the bottom of this issue once and for all and evolve a uniform legislation on all such matters.

Further, preventive measures such as replacing chemical fertilisers with organic inputs should be given more importance than mere palliative measures.

R. P. Rammohan

Hyderabad

Letters to the editor and contributions can be sent by e-mail to: bleditor@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 16, 2006)
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