Crop protection products need to be handled safely to ensure protection of the environment and safety of workers. In addition, the provision of misleading or inadequate information during distribution and marketing may also pose a risk to the environment and human health by allowing these products to be used in inappropriate ways. CropLife International’s leading companies have in place guidelines and standards for the storage and transport of crop protection products. These are sometimes complemented by national or regional association guidelines that aim to assist companies to meet legislative requirements or put procedures in place beyond just complying with regulatory standards.
In the case of storage, these guidelines and standards address, for example:
For transport, guidelines cover the preparation, loading and unloading of the goods, and their subsequent carriage. It is vital that there is effective planning and management of all of these functions if the possibility of an accident taking place is to be minimized.
Additionally, in the event of any accident, instruction and emergency plans are in place to rapidly address the incident directly, or advise those that are dealing with it.
Retailers are important players in the distribution chain. They are often the main source of information and advice to farmers on when to use crop protection products and how they should be handled and used. CropLife International, its member associations and other leading companies provide training and guidelines for retailers, and support certification schemes for those selling crop protection products. For example, CropLife Egypt has provided retailer training that leads to government certification; all retailers must be certified before they can sell crop protection products.
Areas covered in retailer training programs include handling and storage of products, integrated pest management and responsible use and container management. Also the dangers of handling illegal and counterfeit products – which can be not only ineffective, but dangerous to human health and the environment – are highlighted.