Occurrence of pesticide residues in indoor dust of farmworker households across Europe and Argentina

Irene Navarro*, Adrián de la Torre, Paloma Sanz, Isabelle Baldi, Paula Harkes, Esperanza Huerta-Lwanga, Trine Nørgaard, Matjaž Glavan, Igor Pasković, Marija Polić Pasković, Nelson Abrantes, Isabel Campos, Francisco Alcon, Josefina Contreras, Abdallah Alaoui, Jakub Hofman, Anne Vested, Mathilde Bureau, Virginia Aparicio, Daniele MandrioliDaria Sgargi, Hans Mol, Violette Geissen, Vera Silva, María Ángeles Martínez

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Pesticides are widely used as plant protection products (PPPs) in farming systems to preserve crops against pests, weeds, and fungal diseases. Indoor dust can act as a chemical repository revealing occurrence of pesticides in the indoor environment at the time of sampling and the (recent) past. This in turn provides information on the exposure of humans to pesticides in their homes. In the present study, part of the Horizon 2020 funded SPRINT project, the presence of 198 pesticide residues was assessed in 128 indoor dust samples from both conventional and organic farmworker households across Europe, and in Argentina. Mixtures of pesticide residues were found in all dust samples (25–121, min-max; 75, median). Concentrations varied in a wide range (<0.01 ng/g-206 μg/g), with glyphosate and its degradation product AMPA, permethrin, cypermethrin and piperonyl butoxide found in highest levels. Regarding the type of pesticides, insecticides showed significantly higher levels than herbicides and fungicides. Indoor dust samples related to organic farms showed a significantly lower number of residues, total and individual concentrations than those related to conventional farms. Some pesticides found in indoor dust were no longer approved ones (29 %), with acute/chronic hazards to human health (32 %) and with environmental toxicity (21 %).

Original languageEnglish
Article number167797
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2023


  • Fungicides
  • Herbicides
  • Indoor dust
  • Insecticides
  • Organic/conventional farming system
  • Plant protection products


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