Farm Progress

Farm Progress America, April 19, 2024

Where do you buy your pesticides? Mike Pearson takes a look at a new report that examines the sale of counterfeit pesticides for sale online.

April 19, 2024

Mike Pearson tells listeners about a new report out, Trans National Alliance to Combat Illicit Trade or Trace IT, sheds light on the number of crop protection products being sold on major e-commerce platforms.

The report, "Tackling the Sale of Illicit Pesticides" on ecommerce platforms was presented in Paris last week at a conference.

It exposed a gap between the online platforms claims and the reality of enforcement.

The use of counterfeit pesticides can lead to devastating outcomes. Often these substandard products lead to fail to control targeted leading to crop, losses or encouraging pest resistance.

Since ingredients are secret, they could hurt the soil health or compromise future harvests.

A growing concern, especially in Europe are residues. If a neighbor applies an illicit pesticide the products could test positive for residuals and result in no sale.

Emily Reeves, CEO of Crop Life National International, an association of plant science companies says e-sellers must implement a better "Know your Customer" policy for pesticide retailers.

These platforms plus legislators must ensure products designed to help and protect are not compromised through illegal online sales.

The pesticide industry is one of the most regulated industry's in the world. But as the prices have climbed so has the incentives for online platform sales.

Last summer, officials in Brazil, inspectors had reported a surge in the sales of illegal pesticides with 358 tons confiscated-- the highest volume in years.

And it's not just pesticides, illegal seed sales, fraudulent labeling and intellectual property infringement are also common on e-commerce platforms.

In battling crop protection toll sales online, Crop Life International,, says e-retailers need to make sure pesticide sellers are licensed. The license is available for verification by regulators and the pesticide for sale is registered in the country of intended use-- but that's the challenge moving forward.

Farm Progress America is a daily look at key issues in agriculture. It is produced and presented by Mike Pearson, farm broadcaster and host of This Week in Agribusiness.

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