AIC response to Countryfile programme on pesticides
AIC has issued the following comments following the Countryfile programme on Sunday 8th November. The programme covered a topic on illegal pesticides, pesticide disposal and counterfeit pesticides.
- The approval, storage, use and disposal of plant protection products is regulated and monitored in the UK.
- Users of professional plant protection products (PPPs) are required to hold a certificate of competence and undertake additional training each year. Application equipment must be tested annually similar to an MOT. This helps ensure that PPPs are applied accurately and safely to the target weeds, pests or diseases.
- Farmers must keep records of any plant protection products (PPPs) applied to food and feed crops for at least 3 years. Distributors of PPPs must keep records of PPPs they store and supply for at least 5 years.
- The UK Government monitors food and feed for residues of plant protection products to ensure that there is no danger to human or animal health.
- Water companies and the UK environment agencies monitor the status of surface and fresh water continuously for the presence of plant protection products to ensure that there are no issues for human health or the environment.
- The Voluntary Initiative for pesticides, which is sponsored by AIC and other industry organisations, promotes and gives guidance on plant protection product (PPP) stewardship, including the safe disposal of unused or unwanted PPPs.
- The industry Watch Out! campaign encourages farmers to buy only known and reputable plant protection products from known and reputable suppliers (including if buying through the internet). Farmers and growers are encouraged to question unrealistic prices and if in doubt ask suppliers where the product came from.
- Distributors of professional plant protection products (PPPs) in the UK are required to have an annual independent audit to ensure that PPPs sold and supplied are approved for use in the UK. The audit also checks that PPPs stores are secure and that PPPs storage does not endanger human health or the environment.