Reducing Risks of Pesticide Use
The Sustainable Food Group supports SCS Global Services’ Sustainably Grown certification program, specifically the Temporary Exemption Procedure for Prohibited Pesticides. As part of its Pesticide Policy, the Sustainably Grown program maintains a Prohibited Pesticides Reference List that includes pesticides identified as high risk by the World Health Organization, the Globally Harmonized System, UN Environment Programme and Pesticide Action Network. The goal is for all certified growers to be able to phase out the use of prohibited pesticides. Temporary exemptions allow access to pesticides that are critical pest management tools where no alternatives exist, and provide time for growers to identify, trial and implement lower-risk pest management practices.
When applying for an exemption, growers analyze the potential risks of a prohibited pesticide application using the Pesticide Risk Tool, which estimates risks for thirteen concerns including workers, consumers, bystanders, pollinators and other non-target organisms.
Combining our expertise in integrated pest management, pesticide risks and risk mitigation with the Pesticide Risk Tool results and input from additional experts, we review grower’s requests to use prohibited pesticides and recommend action including risk mitigation measures.