Weed sprayers need licences
HA NOI — People must now have certification to use certain plant protection substances.
This is one of the new regulations in the draft law on plant protection and quarantine.
Experts from the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development said that this was the first time people using limited-use plant protection substances needed to have documentation.
Nguyen Xuan Hong, director of the ministry's Department of Plant Protection, said that plant protection substances were not well monitored as 90 per cent of the substances were imported from China, making it difficult and time-consuming to check their ingredients.
"Although the ministry has warned farmers about the dangers of limited-use substances, there are many cheap substances available illegally that they use regularly to heighten productivity without thinking about the consequences," he said.
The new regulations will help raise farmers' awareness about the substances as they will attend mandatory training courses after receiving cards and certificates, he added.
Plant protection substances can sometimes be necessary for agricultural production. If the substances are used properly in a limited time period, they do not have a significant effect on the environment.
To limit the abuse of these substances, which pollutes the environment and affects people's health, farmers should be trained to use them properly and issued certificates when they demonstrate they are able to do so.
Thus the draft law regulated that the farmers must be issued cards or certificates to use these plant protection substances.
However, about 60 per cent of the country's population earns a living by farm work, so a great number of people use the substances. Implementing mandatory training may well be difficult, particularly when it affects the farmers' production process, said Hong. — VNS