Home Sciences The EU promotes biological pesticides to replace chemical ones

The EU promotes biological pesticides to replace chemical ones


the way to the substitution of chemical pesticides for biological ones is open. Community authorities have taken the first steps to promote the use of bacteria, fungi or protozoa to replace traditional chemical compounds whose harmful effects on pollinators are proven.

The European Union announced this week that expands the use of new biological pesticides and, at the same time, it also limits the use of a “harmful insecticide”, sulfoxaflor.

Specifically, Brussels pointed out that sulfoxaflor is a “dangerous agent” for some pollinating species, such as beeswhich is why the Commission urged the States to support its community proposal to eliminate this substance in outdoor crops, and limit its application to greenhouses.

In this sense, the representative of the Community Executive in matters of Health and Food Safety, the European Commissioner Stella Kyriakides, stated that “the use of sulfloxaflor outdoors can be harmful to bumblebees and bees”, two key insects for the reproduction of floral species, reports the Efe agency.

“It is our responsibility and of paramount importance to protect our pollinators and biodiversity for present and future generations. I hope that our member states will support this proposal to limit the use of sulfloxaflor,” he said.

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biological bet

At the same time, the Commission welcomed the agreement reached by the 27 members to extend access to new biological pesticides for European farmers, with the aim of gradually replacing traditional chemical products.

Countries passed regulations to facilitate the use of naturally occurring microorganisms such as bacteria, fungi, viruses, or protozoaas sustainable pesticides.

“Biologics can protect crops with less risk to human health and the environment. Food systems are the main drivers of climate change and environmental degradation, and we urgently need to make this transition,” said Kyriakides.

The EU has committed to halving the use of chemical pesticides by 2030although, for the moment, this transition is subject to the definitive approval of a new regulation that regulates this area, and that Commissioner Kyriakides calculated that it would be available by November 2022.

As explained by the Commission, this regulation shall stipulate the properties of each microorganism that is going to be used as a natural pesticide and must also establish the steps to carry out a scientific evaluation of these products, in order to guarantee that their use does not entail any danger to human health.

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These types of pesticides are divided into two classes. On the one hand, there are the biotic (living), which are basically made up of fungi and bacteria, organisms that have the ability to counteract the attack of pests and diseases, because they settle in plants and prevent them from spreading. disperse On the other hand, there are also abiotic (non-living) pesticides, which are made up of plant extracts and other elements whose main function is to block or restrict the development of these negative agents. It should be noted that some of these can control insects and diseases at the same time. Also, these pesticides they are easy to handle and turn out to be cheaper compared to other products; In addition, they can be applied at different times of the year, in any place and in different cultivation techniques, either in the open field or under protected agriculture. In this way, its use will depend on the species of pest or disease, the type of plant, the needs of each producer and the available resources.

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