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The Agronomic impact of Directive 91/414/ EEC on pesticide regulation (CTP0506B) - PS2526

Pesticides are heavily regulated within the EU, both before and after approval. To gain approval for a new pesticide, or the renewal of an old one, its manufacturer must submit evidence that it is effective and safe in use for operators, for the environment, and for consumers. Foodstuffs treated with pesticides may not be supplied to the market if they bear residues in excess of levels laid down at the time of approval. These Maximum Residue Levels are set to reflect Good Agricultural Practice and are always well below levels that could cause ill health to consumers.

The economic impact of this regulatory framework is significant for manufacturers of pesticides, and for growers who want to get approval for specialised uses. Retailers and food manufacturers have to pay laboratories to check residue levels. These extra costs will be reflected in higher food prices for consumers.

Where the cost of obtaining a new approval or a renewal is higher than the profit that might be generated, then the manufacturer will not proceed with that product. Currently active substances and uses previously approved in the UK are being lost. To some extent losses are being offset, by new active substances and new uses of existing active substances, but the net trend in authorisations is downwards.

From the agronomic perspective two adverse consequences from this trend are possible:

(a) that there are no pesticide products available to treat particular pests etc. on particular crops (the Horticultural Development Council has identified cases already and their list may well grow);

(b) that the range of pesticides available particularly for major uses is so small that resistance will develop in pests and there will be no alternative products to use.

The overall aim of this project is to consider the position of the major crop sectors in the light of regulatory developments to date, and predicted future trends, and thereby identify major areas where the problems identified above are emerging or are likely to emerge in the future.
The project’s Specific Objectives are:

1. to establish the likely impacts of EU Regulations on the availability of pesticides for UK crops;
2. to determine the specific chemicals or groups of chemicals that it would be desirable to maintain from the agronomic perspective (if only on a temporary basis) to avoid major difficulties; and

3. to determine any alternatives for predicted major gaps in pesticide availability
Project Documents
• Final Report : The Agronomic impact of Directive 91/414/ EEC on pesticide regulation (CTP0506B)   (432k)
Time-Scale and Cost
From: 2006

To: 2006

Cost: £26,850
Contractor / Funded Organisations
Drew Associates
Agriculture and Food Chain              
Agriculture Development Scheme              
Arable Farming              
Cereal Production              
Crop Diseases              
Crop Pests              
Environmental Impact              
Farm Management              
Farm Woodlands              
Pesticide Residues              
Pesticide use              
Policy Development              
Sustainable Production              
Fields of Study
Pesticide Safety