MPs have been urged to ban pesticide residue in all baby food, based on a study suggesting more than 30 per cent of New Zealand's infant food is contaminated.
Lobbyists have told a Parliamentary select committee New Zealand should follow in the European Union's footsteps and take a zero tolerance approach.
A 2009 study in New Zealand found five pesticides in 32 infant food samples.
Meriel Watts, of the Pesticide Action Network, said even low levels of particular pesticides could cause developmental problems in babies.
"This is extremely important for the future of children in New Zealand and, in fact, the whole of New Zealand society, in terms of our ability to function as an intelligent, well-developed society."
New Zealand should also do more testing of baby food, she said.