Use of Pesticides
Protection of end users from Pesticides
With the introduction of the Sustainable Use of Pesticides Directive, rules to reduce the risks to human health and the environment associated with pesticide use have been set. From the 26th November 2015, only a registered professional user can apply plant protection products authorised for professional use. In order to register with DAFM, users must have the appropriate training.
At all times the end user must follow the instructions for use on the product label and must wear appropriate protective clothing (e.g. gloves), if recommended on the product label.
Protection of drinking water from Pesticides
The protection of drinking water from pesticide contamination is very important. Drinking water monitoring results for Ireland show that a number of commonly used pesticides are being detected more frequently in recent years. Careless storage, handling or use of pesticides, or improper disposal of empty pesticide containers, can easily cause breaches of the legal limit for pesticides in drinking water.
STRIPE – Surface water Tool for Reducing the Impact of Pesticides in the Environment
STRIPE is an initiative which incentivises farmers to adopt the best practice measure of using spray drift reducing technology to reduce the impact of pesticide exposure on the environment while concurrently increasing farm efficiency. The initiative allows farmers to reduce the size of mandatory untreated areas of land near water courses (buffer zones) which in turn allows farmers to make more effective use of their agricultural land while helping to protect aquatic life from pesticide contamination by reducing exposure.
Users should take the following precautions to reduce spray drift and ensure that the pesticide is kept to the area they are treating:
- use of the right spraying techniques and equipment
- taking account of the weather conditions, and
- protecting members of the public, wildlife and the environment