Responsible, safe and effective use of pesticides towards a sustainable food system

November, 29/2022 - 16:42
An assessment of agrochemicals through interviews with farmers found that many are still dependent on pesticides and consider them vital to their agricultural output, both in terms of output and quality.
The Institute of Policy and Strategy for Agriculture and Rural Development (IPSARD), Plant Protection Department and CropLife Asia (CLA) co-organised the workshop "Responsible, safe and effective use of plant protection products towards the systemic sustainable food". — Photo baochinhphu.vn

HÀ NỘI — Managing the use of pesticides is among the most important factors in developing a safe and sustainable agricultural production, Huỳnh Tấn Đạt, Deputy Director of the Plant Protection Department under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said.

Speaking at a workshop "Responsible, safe and effective use of plant protection products towards the systemic sustainable food" last Friday, Đạt said that Việt Nam's agricultural sector was moving towards a green, clean, safe and sustainable production with enhanced values and accumulated multi-values.

The workshop was co-organised by the Institute of Policy and Strategy for Agriculture and Rural Development (IPSARD), Plant Protection Department and CropLife Asia (CLA).

Phát said that to achieve more responsible production, it was necessary to develop models that promote a close linkage from the control of input materials to the increased values of Vietnamese farming products.

"The management of pesticides at all stages from testing, registration, production, trading, use and control of residues in agricultural products, post-use package collection and treatment would be further tightened," Đạt said.

Moreover, the plant protection authority would continue to review and remove active ingredients of pesticides that posed a high risk to human health and the ecological environment, Đạt said, adding that Việt Nam encouraged research, transfer, production, trading and application of biological measures and biological pesticides.

"Especially, the application of information technology, applying measures to quickly trace the origin of pesticides circulating through the QR code system, modern technology such as light traps, remote sensing, forecasting, and drones are much welcomed in agricultural production," he added.

The Department of Plant Protection would also strengthen coordination in inspecting pesticides' production, import, trade, and use.

Đạt said that a programme of responsible, safe and effective use of plant protection products engaged local authorities and agencies in managing and controlling the quality of plant protection products, monitoring the trade and the use of pesticides.

"The programme also helped connect local authorities with pesticide dealers to help them better understand their responsibilities and rights in guiding farmers to use pesticides safely," he said.

"Under the programme, farmers are supported to use pesticides safely, which also helps to protect their own health and save production costs. Once agricultural products ensure food safety and hygiene, the higher income farmers will have," said Đạt.

Nguyễn Mai Hương from the Rural Development Centre said an assessment of agrochemicals through interviews with farmers found that many are still dependent on pesticides and consider them vital to their agricultural output, both in terms of output and quality.

"Farmers are very little or not fully aware of the problem of residues and don't know how to manage residues in the farming process because they do not directly receive feedback on the residue levels on their crops. They don't know how to check residues but only care more about the yield and products. Many farmers still believe that they are using pesticides properly," Hương said.

Therefore, she said that an important solution would be to raise awareness and improve the habit of using agrochemicals and sustainable farming practices for farmers.

According to Nguyễn Trường Vương, leader of the team that supports and guides farmers to use pesticides safely, effectively and responsibly, CropLife Vietnam, when strengthening the linkage between farmers and businesses, businesses would offer good quality products, instruct farmers how to use the products in a safe, effective and responsible way.

He said that farmers would gain knowledge to use products on crops and manage pests most effectively while improving the yield and quality of products.

"The change in using plant protection products brings great value. It is the basis for realising the programme's long-term and most important goal, which is to change farmers' pesticide habits. Farmers who are provided with knowledge and support to use pesticides will join building safe agricultural production areas, thereby improving the value of agricultural products," he said. — VNS

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