Pesticidewise is a new on-line portal that helps farmers and their families to stay safe while using pesticides to protect their crops. It is also a resource for trainers involved in pesticide stewardship.
Protecting crops from losses due to weeds, pests and diseases is vital to global food security and to the livelihood of farmers. Pesticides play a key role in keeping crops healthy and achieving good yields.
However, they must be used carefully to protect farmers and their families; and to ensure that they are effective and remain part of the farmer’s toolkit.
Pesticidewise explains what farmers and all users can do to manage the potential hazards and minimize risks. The focus is on smallholders using knapsack sprayers. Paying strict attention to the 5 Golden Rules for safe use is key.
- Exercise caution at all times
- Read and understand the product label
- Wash after spraying
- Maintain sprayer
- Use personal protective clothing and equipment
Pesticidewise follows the cycle of crop protection, from purchasing products, through their use on the farm, to safe disposal. It also provides guidance for good hygiene practices and management of incidents (for example, spills or accidental exposure to product).
Trainers will find Pesticidewise a valuable resource while instructing farmers in stewardship programs. For example, there are record sheets and short videos. Topics covered in videos include how to avoid contamination; choice of nozzle; techniques for spraying particular crops; and many others. Farmers can watch these videos in their own time as they need further information.
Pesticidewise is mobile-friendly, there are versions in several different languages and it is freely available.
Visit the site, tell your colleagues and help farmers and their families stay safe.