|California farm workers (Reuters photo by Mike Blake)|
Vulcan, a brand name chemical produced by Dow Chemicals, was sprayed on an orchard southwest of Bakersfield, Calif, led to the pesticide drifting to a neighboring property where workers harvesting cabbage "subsequently complained of a bad odor, nausea and vomiting," Milman writes. The primary ingredient in Vulcan is chlorpyrifos. Farm operator Dan Andrews, who said he doesn't use chlorpyrifos, said wind spread the pesticide, leading to sickness, which forced the harvest to be shut down. He said samples of cabbage and clothing have been taken to the state lab for testing.
Chlorpyrifos "has been linked to developmental problems in children such as lower birth weight, reduced IQ and attention disorders," Milman writes. "Large doses of the chemical can cause convulsions and sometimes even death. People are exposed through spray drift, residues on food and water contamination."