Filed under: EU Information, Plant Protection | Tags: chemicals, endocrine disrupters, pesticides
The Chemicals Regulation Directorate (CRD) of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has published an update on EU deliberations on how to define and regulate endocrine disrupting chemicals (EDCs).
Work is ongoing in developing EU Directive 1107/2009, which is concerned with Plant Protection Products, to set criteria to determine what is an EDC. There has been input to this process from a number of bodies, including the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), and the European Commission’s Joint Research Council (JRC). The JRC have failed to reach a consensus, whilst EFSA believe that EDCs can be regulated in the same way as other toxic chemicals, i.e. they can have a threshold value. Many other contributors to this topic believe that no threshold value should be set for EDCs, and a “zero-tolerance” level is applicable.
The outcome of this process will define what Member States will have to do to remove EDCs from plant protection products (pesticides) going forward. These will need to be identified and, depending on whether a threshold limit is set or whether they will be regulated at a zero level, appropriate steps taken to find substitutes, as well as monitoring for the presence and/or level of EDCs. There will be a substantial effort involved in this, with a significant cost. Progress continues, albeit slowly, but a resolution is required in order that there can be clarity for regulators, farmers, analytical scientists and those who campaign for environmental protection.
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