Producers of illegal and counterfeit pesticides, users, and society should realise that these products are severely affecting farmers, the environment, and food safety, experts said.
D'Arcy Quinn of plant science industry association CropLife International said illegal pesticides – defined as those not registered with Vietnamese crop authorities – and fakes destroyed crops, caused losses to farmers, and caused food loss and food safety problems.
Speaking at a media briefing yesterday to kick off his organisation's Counterfeit Pesticides Prevention Week, he said these products had caused some agricultural products to be banned in other countries and put consumers and the environment at risk.
Producers of these products had been linked with criminals groups.
"Farmers lose their crops if they use illegal and counterfeit pesticides... and they are left alone with their destroyed fields since the criminals disappear after selling their products."
Counterfeit Pesticides Prevention Week from September 12 to 16 has been held to raise awareness of the economic, social, and health problems caused by illegal and counterfeit pesticides, advocate stronger policing measures, and support legal frameworks for prevention, Shane Emms, deputy chairman of CropLife Viet Nam, said.
Key stakeholders in the prevention, including the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Department of Plant Protection, farmers' associations, customs and economic police, will come together for a conference during the event to discuss existing problems and strengthening of legal frameworks.
Quinn and Emms told Viet Nam News that several counterfeits of prestigious products by Syngenta and Bayer had been discovered in Viet Nam but crop authorities were successfully combating them.
CropLife International is a global federation operating in more than 90 countries. — VNS