Environmental connections to public health >>
Buying flowers? Go organic to protect workers & their kids
So you’re picking out flowers to mail your loved ones for Valentines Day, but guess what else you’ll be sending them—according to the Associated Press, the flowers you send will be “sprayed, rinsed, and dipped in a battery of lethal chemicals.” But an even greater danger is faced by the Colombian workers who produce the majority of U.S. imported flowers, and their unborn children.
The Harvard School of Public Health examined 72 children ages 7-8 in a flower-growing region of Ecuador whose mothers were exposed to pesticides during pregnancy and found they had developmental delays of up to four years on aptitude tests.
"Every time we look, we're finding out these pesticides are more dangerous than we ever thought before and more toxic at lower levels," said Philippe Grandjean, who led the Harvard study published last year.