February 2012: Gordon Davidson reported in the Scottish Farmer, that the European Union law enforcement agency, Europol, has issued a warning about counterfeit pesticides, which could account for as much as 25% of supplies in some European countries.
The agency pointed out that many of the illicit pesticides violated safety standards and could include banned chemicals that disrupt the endocrine system and the production of hormones, threatening the health of farmers and consumers and posing a risk to the natural environment.
SNP MEP Alyn Smith said the trade in illegal pesticides is big business, already amounting to billions of euros a year and rising . . . This trade is now so widespread and professional that it really is difficult to tell the difference between legitimate and counterfeit supplies, and even more so considering that, as often as not, these illegal products also use the packaging of big and well-recognised agrichemical companies such as Syngenta, Du Pont and BASF.
Farmers and wholesalers are urged to be vigilant when purchasing pesticide
Warning – if you must buy these products:
- always buy products from reputable suppliers.
- avoid Internet deals or mobile offers that seem ‘too good to be true’
- never buy pesticides from anyone who refuses to give a receipt
- always ensure that the products have proper labels with complete instructions in English.