Consultation Sessions: Sustainable use of Pesticides

11 March 2019

MEUSAC, in conjunction with the Malta Consumer and Competition Affairs Authority (MCCAA), organised a consultation session in Gozo on the revision of the National Action Plan for the Sustainable Use of Pesticides. The new plan will be covering the period 2019-2023, where it expands on the framework of the previous NAP.

The new plan consists of six objectives, including training and information, control on equipment, controls on handling and storage of plant protection products, controls on the use of these products in specified areas, integrated pest management strategies, and risk indicators.

Stakeholders present for the meeting suggested that instructions on pesticide products should be tailor-made for use in Malta. This is because current instructions appearing on the products assume that farmers have acres of land, when in Malta, most farmers typically own less than an acre of farmland. Stakeholders also called for the possibility of having a laboratory available, where pesticides can be tested in accordance with Malta’s climate and environment.

In another consultation on the sustainable use of pesticides, this time held at Għajn in Rabat, those present spoke about the fact there aren’t enough studies on chemicals used today, despite the fact that chemicals have been used systematically in fields for the last 30 years or so and that organic farming is hard to sustain despite subsidies that exist. Questions also arose to why glyphosate has not been banned in Malta and across the EU despite studies that it is ‘carcinogenic’.

On the last point, worthy of note is the fact that Malta is fighting against the use of glyphosate in front of EU institutions

The consultation is currently open for feedback. Interested stakeholders may find more information here.

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