Reasoned opinion on the modification of the existing MRLs for dicamba in herbs and herbal infusions (leaves and flowers)

dicamba, herbs and herbal infusions, MRL application, Regulation (EC) No 396/2005, consumer risk assessment, benzoic acid herbicide
First published in the EFSA Journal
27 November 2013
21 November 2013
Reasoned Opinion


In accordance with Article 6 of Regulation (EC) No 396/2005, France, hereafter referred to as the evaluating Member State (EMS), received an application from Syngenta Agro S.A.S. to modify the existing MRLs for the active substance dicamba in herbs and herbal infusions (leaves and flowers). In order to accommodate for the intended uses of dicamba, France proposed to raise the default MRL from the limit of quantification of 0.05* mg/kg to 4 mg/kg in herbs and 40 mg/kg in herbal infusions (leaves and flowers). France drafted an evaluation report in accordance with Article 8 of Regulation (EC) No 396/2005, which was submitted to the European Commission and forwarded to EFSA. EFSA concludes that the data are sufficient to derive a MRL proposal of 4 mg/kg for herbs. For herbal infusions (leaves) a MRL proposal of 40 mg/kg is derived by extrapolation from the residue trials conducted on oregano, considering a default dehydration factor of 10. Taking into account that the nature of the other crops classified in this group (hibiscus flowers, rose petals, jasmine flowers, elderflowers and lime) is not comparable, and that the notified GAP seems to be inappropriate for these crops, no MRL proposal is made for herbal infusions (flowers). A validated analytical enforcement method was submitted to control residues of dicamba in fresh herbs. For herbal infusions, a matrix which is considered as difficult to analyse, specific validation data should be provided. However, taking into account the successful validation in different matrix types, the analytical method is accepted on a provisional basis also for herbal infusion.Based on the risk assessment results, EFSA concludes that the proposed use of dicamba on herbs and herbal infusions (leaves) will not result in a consumer exposure exceeding the toxicological reference values and therefore is unlikely to pose a consumer health risk.

European Food Safety Authority
pesticides.mrl [at]
EFSA Journal 2013;11(11):3470
Question Number
On request from
European Commission

Background documents