Voluntary Initiative unveils insecticide guidelines for farmers, sprayers

The Voluntary Initiative (VI) said Thursday that it has produced new insecticide guidelines that form the foundation for best practices for farmers and spray operators.

The VI suggests insecticide users identify environmentally sensitive farm areas, follow an integrated approach, use pest thresholds as a decision-making tool for treatment, and ensure treatment is done safely and accurately. The VI said that by following this advice in conjunction with its pest management plan, farmers and spray operators will minimize the impact of insecticides and help protect the future availability of plant protection products.

VI Scottish Chairman Andrew Moir, who is also a farmer, said that while insecticides remain essential tools, he would advise farmers and sprayer operators to use them only when absolutely necessary.

“The new VI insecticide guidance gives advice on how to minimize the risks, but it is also important to take advice from an agronomist, as they are dealing with insecticides on a daily basis and have invaluable specialist knowledge,” Moir said.

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