About Pesticides

'Pesticide' is a broad term, covering a range of products that are used to control pests.  Pesticides are substances meant for preventing, destroying or mitigating any pest.  The most common use of pesticides is as plant protection products (PPPs), which in general protect plants from damaging influences such as weeds, diseases or insects.  This use of pesticides is so common that the term “pesticide” is often treated as synonymous with plant protection products, although it is in fact a broader term, as pesticides are also used for non-agricultural purposes.

Biocides (or “biocidal products”) are a type of pesticide, which include products such as disinfectants, preservatives, rodenticides and anti-fouling products that are used to control various types of harmful organisms.  A biocide can be defined as an “active substance or preparation containing one or more active substances, in the form in which they are supplied to the user, intended to destroy, deter, render harmless, prevent the action of, or otherwise exert a controlling effect on any harmful organism by chemical or biological means”.

Pesticides you may have heard of include: insecticides (insect killers), fungicides (mould and fungi killers), herbicides (weedkillers), plant growth regulators, molluscicides (slug pellets) and rodenticides (rat and mouse killers).

Why do we need Pesticides?

Use of Pesticides

What is a plant protection product?

What is a biocidal product?

The Main Pesticide Types