Calif. pesticide opponents cite Florida report

Tests have found dangerous levels of the compound iodide in groundwater near where an agricultural pesticide that is pending approval in California had been applied.

That's according to a report completed in Florida, where the pesticide methyl iodide is already in use.

The report was circulated by environmental and farmworker advocacy groups seeking to stop the pesticide from being registered for use in California.

Methyl iodide's Tokyo-based manufacturer Arysta LifeScience Corp. funded the pesticide safety study as a condition of the chemical's approval for use on Florida farms.

Arysta business development chief Jeff Tweedy criticized the groups' analysis of the study data, saying the fumigant was not to blame for the high groundwater iodide levels.

Copyright 2010 The Associated Press.