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Brazilian ag chem approvals under attackBrazilian ag chem approvals under attack

Brazil’s regulatory agencies speed up ag chem approvals, and critics have noticed.

James Thompson

February 20, 2020

1 Min Read

As you’re thinking about budgets and ag chemical use for 2020, the Brazilians are under attack for their new administration’s aggressive approvals of new pesticides.

This comes on the heels of the black eye Brazilian soybeans took when Brazilian President Bolsonaro was widely understood to be encouraging a record amount of Amazon Rainforest burning to make way for bean fields.

An investigative report on Ozy.com, a media site, indicated ”Brazil released 474 pesticides last year, the highest number in 14 years.” While one can quibble with the exact number of approvals (some had been in the pipeline before President Bolsonaro was sworn in on the first day of 2019,) the underlying point is true. The new administration has been pushing to speed up the process.

What’s it to you?

Brazil’s effort to speed up its glacial pace of new product approvals has been underway since the last leftist regime ended, former ag minister Roberto Rodrigues explained to local media. “The truth is that until (the previous administration) approving a crop protection product in Brazil took an average of eight years. In developed countries, it took one to two years...We spent a lot of time hobbled in the market due to rather ideological bureaucratic red tape.”

As Rodrigues says, a streamlining of the approval process for such products could help Brazil adopt the latest tech more quickly and realize its benefits. But is the timing of the news giving Brazilian agriculture a black eye in foreign markets?

The opinions of the author are not necessarily those of Farm Futures or Farm Progress. 

About the Author(s)

James Thompson


James Thompson grew up on farms in Illinois and Tennessee and got his start in Ag communications when he won honorable mention in a 4-H speech contest. He graduated from University of Illinois and moved to Tocantins, Brazil and began farming. Over his career he has written several articles on South American agriculture for a number of publications around the world. He also edits www.cropspotters.com, a site focusing on Brazilian agriculture.

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