Shoppers in Japan are being warned to avoid buying flowers at some of Japan’s biggest supermarkets amid concerns that some are breeding flowers with pesticides.
A report in the Japan Times newspaper says that flowers sold by Tokyo’s Shiga Shimbun supermarket and Shogakukan chain are likely to contain chemicals including the insecticide DDT.
It comes as the country struggles with a rise in cases of dengue fever.
The Japanese newspaper says a study of flowers sold at Shiga’s Shimbu supermarket found that the plants contained a mixture of chemicals including chlorpyrifos, a known neurotoxin that is highly toxic to animals.
The paper quoted Shiga owner Nobuyuki Nishizumi as saying the plants were being sprayed to kill insects.
“It’s very hard to sell flowers at Shogakuen, but we are looking into it,” Mr Nishizum said.
He added that he would contact the authorities to find out what kind of pesticides were being used.
Last year, the Japanese government banned a pesticide used to kill mosquitoes from the country’s large supermarkets.