The Agricultural Industries Confederation (AIC) has put forward proposals for a simpler and more efficient plant protection products (PPPs) regulatory regime in response to the government’s consultation on the revised National Action Plan for the Sustainable Use of Pesticides.
Hazel Doonan, head of agronomy and crop protection sector at AIC, said: “AIC has stressed that decisions based on sound, relevant science, provide more protection to human health and the environment than those based on emotion or politics. To that end, we support greater transparency on the way evidence is used to inform decisions on PPPs.
“AIC supports a drive for increased uptake of Integrated Pest Management (IPM), with trusted advisers critical to identifying IPM opportunities for farmers and growers. However, increased use of IPM must be weighed against the risks associated with some IPM measures, for example failing to meet end-market requirements. Consumers must also accept that the environmental benefits of increased IPM may lead to less than perfect produce in shops.
“Regarding safe and responsible use of PPPs, we have highlighted the standards which distributors adhere to and proposed that before introducing additional controls on the sale of Professional PPPs, the regulator ensures that the current regulatory requirements for storage, sale and supply and use of PPPs is enforced across all businesses in all sectors.
“AIC believes that certification and on-going training of those who supply, store, recommend and use PPPs, will continue to support their sustainable use, and address and minimise any risks to human health and the environment.
“We suggest that the Voluntary Initiative for Pesticides (VI) and the Amenity Forum are best placed to work across a wide range of stakeholders to help Government deliver the aims of the revised National Action Plan.”