On the 8th of May 2023 European Commission launched a public consultation on prohibiting the production of hazardous chemicals for export. Responding to the publication: “CropLife Europe supports the ambitious commitment of the European Commission and its Chemicals Strategy for Sustainability (CSS) to protect human health and the environment. As an innovative industry that supports farmers progress towards a more sustainable EU food production, we are dedicated to increasing the sustainability of our solutions.
The CSS sets out to achieve a big transformation the EU will see under the Green Deal. We recognise the Commission’s underlying concern that certain substances banned for use as pesticides in Europe are exported to other parts of the world.
Many of the substances which would be captured by such a ban are exported to fulfil important and specific needs of farmers in other parts of the world. Different regions have different needs – the agronomic needs and climatic conditions vary by region and are considered in the country and region-specific registration process. In addition, some of these substances are registered and used in third countries for other important societal reasons, like vector control, other than crop protection.
Simply banning manufacturing for export of these substances will not have the desired outcome. Doing so would result in losing a valuable opportunity for the EU to positively influence how pesticides are used in other parts of the world. CropLife therefore encourages the EU to use its world leading influence to show how best practices of safety, risk assessment of chemical products and transparency can better protect people and the environment.
Banning chemical/pesticide exports from the EU would increase the risk of illegal and counterfeit pesticides being used in other parts of the world, compromise EU competitiveness and investment in innovation in the sector. Such a ban would likely result in manufacturing being exported from Europe to other regions in the world, where the EU would have no opportunity to lead by example.
The public consultation, offers an important opportunity for CropLife Europe and its membership to contribute with its expert perspective, resulting from many years of practical experience. Our sector will continue to be a partner in the green and digital transformation of European agriculture.
We look forward to contributing to the public consultation and continuing dialogue with the European Commission, civil society and all interested parties, and we remain committed to finding a solution which is acceptable to all parties, including farmers.“