23 October 2017
The production and use of crop protection products in Australia is highly regulated to assure safety for users, consumers and the environment. Our regulatory system is world-leading in the protection it offers, but highly inefficient in the way it operates.
National harmonisation of the different state approaches to pesticide regulation is crucial to provide applicants with certainty about how their application will be assessed, and to ensure Australian farmers get timely access to the latest and most innovative crop protection solutions being used by their overseas competitors.
Inconsistent requirements across the states and territories for pesticide use – including licensing, training, access and record keeping – make it difficult and unnecessarily expensive for farmers to comply. Inconsistent training, licensing and use restrictions establish unnecessary barriers to interstate trade, while potentially undermining the assumptions made by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA), when originally assessing the product.
CropLife Australia has been campaigning for nearly a decade for the Australian, state and territory governments to address these deficiencies. We welcomed the 2008 joint-government decision to develop a single national framework to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of pesticide regulation in Australia. The National Agvet System Policy Taskforce (link) is now undertaking this work.
Despite five years of collaboration between governments, industry and farm chemical users to develop a suite of reforms, more work is still needed to implement reforms that improve consistency in pesticide regulatory approaches across jurisdictions.
Refer to our submissions below for more information about best practice regulation and national harmonisation.