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News

New code of practice for using pesticides

Defra : 13 February, 2006  (Company News)
A new Code of Practice for professional users of plant protection products was published today. The Statutory Code replaces and updates three previous codes of practice including the code for using pesticides in amenity areas, which was previously a voluntary code.
A new Code of Practice for professional users of plant protection products was published today. The Statutory Code replaces and updates three previous codes of practice including the code for using pesticides in amenity areas, which was previously a voluntary code.

Sustainable Farming and Food Minister, Lord Bach, said:

'I am delighted to launch this new and up to date code. It is an important development as it will help all professional users of pesticides, whether they work in agriculture, horticulture, forestry or the amenity sector, to better understand and operate within the legislation.

'The latest code provides information on the new legal requirement to keep spray records and advises on the new laws regarding protection of ground water and waste management. We are delighted that our close working with the Plain English Campaign has resulted in a code which is clearer, more focused and easier to read and understand.'

The three codes replaced are:
- the Code of Practice for the Safe Use of Pesticides on Farms and Small Holdings ('the Green Code')
- the Code of Practice for the use of Approved pesticides in Amenity Areas and Industrial Areas ('the Orange Code') a voluntary code produced by the National Association of Agricultural Contractors and the British Agrochemical Association
- those parts of the Code of Practice for the safe use of Pesticides for Non-Agricultural Purposes - The Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations 1999 ('the Blue Code') which deal with forestry.

The new code's statutory basis means that it can be used in evidence if people are taken to court for offences involving pesticides.

An important feature in the code is the reference to the need, by law, to keep records of pesticide treatments as a result of two new EC regulations coming into force on 1 January this year. These regulations require that everyone who produces or harvests plant products for people or animals to eat must keep records of any plant protection products (pesticides) they use. Other professional users of pesticides are advised that they should start keeping records now since it will soon become a legal requirement for them also.
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