WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Embassy in the Dominican Republic reports that food safety officials in that country are not testing imported U.S. rice and fruit juices for arsenic, contrary to a previous media report. Media in the Dominican Republic reported that the government would test U.S. rice and fruit juices in response to separate Consumer Reports articles on arsenic in U.S. rice and fruit juices.
Officials at the Ministries of Public Health and Food Safety reportedly confirmed to U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) representatives at the U.S. Embassy that there are no plans at this time to test. The ministries have made no public statements, and trade flows remain normal at this time.
USA Rice Federation will continue to monitor this situation and provide information on the food safety and nutritional benefits of U.S. rice to USDA posts worldwide. Annual U.S. rice exports to the Dominican Republic averaged 20,230 metric tons in 2007-2011.