New guidelines to harmonise EAC pesticide regulations

New guidelines to harmonise EAC pesticide regulations. [File, Standard]

Three key documents related to the harmonisation of pesticide regulations in the East African Community (EAC) have been sent to member States for implementation.

The new guideline follows three years of joint consultations. The documents, which comprise of guidelines on pesticides registration, are about sharing of data, efficacy trials, and residue trials and requirements.

Kenya Pest Control Products Board Manager, Registration Paul Ngaruiya said the Government was now working to adopt the documents into its laws, following approvals by EAC ministers.

“The documents have already been released to various countries and can now start working on their laws to start implementation,” said Ngaruiya.

Mr Ngaruiya was speaking yesterday at the 5th China International Agro-chemical and Crop protection exhibition in Nairobi that brought together players in the agrochemical sector from across the globe.

The pest control manager noted that the harmonisation would improve product quality and cut back on time taken for registration of the products.

Some products take up even 18 trials to get registered in the various countries under the current procedures, he added.

“When we harmonise regulations, we believe that if any product is to move from one country to another, the quality might be guaranteed rather than having the various countries doing it independently and resources are not that many in some countries,” said Ngaruiya.

The trials are the lengthiest and the guidelines will inform applicants seeking registration on the number of seasons they need to test a product. For example, products for pineapples require three years to test.

The guidelines on data will help applicants know what to submit including toxicology and physical-chemical properties.

A major challenge to the harmonisation had been resources. He, however, could not give the timelines when the harmonisation would be finalised with every country moving at its own pace.

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