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How many nitrates in watermelons?

The official sale season began in Moscow
watermelons. Gastronom.ru estimated the content of nitrates in
watermelons bought in stores, markets and melons

Not a single check!

Until August 1, Rosprebrebnadzor traditionally did not recommend buying watermelons, citing their poor quality and saturation with nitrates. Now, as the head of Rospotrebnadzor, chief sanitary doctor of Russia Gennady Onishchenko, assures, watermelons at authorized points of sale are safe for health and «have a document confirming that they do not contain nitrites, nitrates, toxic chemicals.»

In particular, because the Astrakhan melons from Central Asia replaced the watermelons — which, again, according to Gennady Onishchenko, are “better”.

It is very easy to check whether the data of the “watermelon document” is true, using a compact tester that online determines the content of nitrates. The nitrate tester «Soeks», which was used by the editors of Gastronom.ru, is designed to analyze the nitrate content in fresh foods and vegetables in the domestic environment and has a certificate of conformity as a personal electronic nitrate tester. To obtain more accurate data, it is necessary to carry out the analysis in the laboratory, but even this tester allows you to obtain objective data.

The editors of Gastronom.ru chose watermelons from six outlets in the capital for testing.

The maximum permissible concentration of nitrates in watermelon is 60 mg / kg (according to the decision of the Chief State Sanitary Inspector of the Russian Federation of November 14, 2001 N 36 “On the implementation of sanitary rules”).
The permissible daily intake of nitrates for an adult is 3.7 mg of nitrates per kg of body weight (according to WHO).

Watermelon: bad thing

Biologist; worked on the melons of the Nikolaevsky district of the Volgograd region

Sellers prefer to say that their watermelons from Astrakhan or from the Volgograd region — because in these regions things are still very good with watermelons, unlike other regions. Nevertheless, anyone agrees that watermelons every year become worse and taste, and in appearance, and the likelihood of poisoning.

And this situation has several reasons.

Here is the first: lack of real control.

During Soviet times, many special organizations supervised the melon crop rotation. An outsider may think that such severity is useless — and it will be wrong.

Because all melon crops have a tendency to cross pollination, and in the absence of control they give monstrous hybrids in the second generation. Even if a pumpkin can pollinate a close-growing zucchini, what about the different varieties of watermelons? In order to maintain good quality of the product, it is necessary to sow annually new seeds, grown in special conditions and carefully selected.

This is not a fad, this is the rule.

However, in order to understand all these difficulties, one must have an education, and farmers, as a rule, do not have it. Many of them believe that it is enough to take a few watermelons from the grown crop, smash them and sow the melon with the seeds next season.

And such illiteracy is the second reason for what is happening with watermelons.

The varieties for which the Astrakhan and Volgograd Regions once were famous disappear, and under the former names something is sold that is no longer amenable to an intelligible definition.

Of course, farmers who violate the rules of crop rotation are fined, but who does not know what fines are in the Russian Federation?

The third reason is greed.

Farmers, in order to save money, buy cheap seeds of Dutch, American and other hybrids and varieties.

Although farmers can be understood — in order to sow melon with good elite seeds purchased at a proven experimental station, about 180,000 rubles is required for 100 hectares. And these 180,000 are the only things a farmer can save.

Cultivation costs include renting land, plowing, weeding (or better two during the season), protecting crops from animals and harvesting.

But you can not save, but increase the yield or shift the ripening period. Both that, and another is reached in the same way — aggressive agrotechnics.

We must rent a plot of land, sow the Dutch or Chinese medium-early variety, then add a lot of nitrogen fertilizers (which we then get in the form of nitrates directly with watermelon). Filed fruits should be filled with water, and then covered with melon film. After harvesting, such land should “rest”, since the load was too great, but tenants do not hesitate — they just rent the next plot, since we have a lot of land.

In this way all (!) July watermelons are born.

And this is the fourth reason.

The fifth reason is non-compliance with the rules of transportation and sale.

The vans are old, nobody washes them; Watermelons do not load properly (because they need to be able to do this) and often load too much (the car’s carrying capacity is exceeded; therefore, by the way, carriers have to pay DPS fines).

As for the sale. you already know everything.

* Opinion of our authors may not coincide with the opinion of gastronom.ru

Security Measures: What Watermelon Vendors Recommend

It’s impossible to eat a watermelon and not get your dose of nitrates, but it’s still worth trying to minimize their portion.

How to choose a ripe and tasty watermelon on the market and at the same time not get poisoned with nitrates? We asked this question to watermelon sellers.

One of them was so honest that he said: “I don’t take a watermelon at all — Iranian watermelon and its quality is not very good.”

First of all, watermelons should be bought exclusively in the season.

It is best to do this, starting from the last week of August and in September, when watermelons have time to ripen in a more or less “natural” way.

Also, choosing where to buy a watermelon, you should pay attention to the number of buyers.

The more of them, the better — it means that watermelons are not stale, and fresh berries are imported quite regularly.

If in the middle of August, some sellers assure you that they have Uzbek watermelons — you shouldn’t believe this: in Uzbekistan, the watermelons came off as early as a month ago.

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