Technical aspects of the application of pesticides and other agricultural inputs are neglected in many countries of the world and often completely unknown at the field level. Huge amounts of pesticides are wasted or unnecessarily applied and large numbers of persons involved in spraying suffer from intoxication because farmers and equipment operators do not know the principles of application technology and because the equipment they use is obsolete or in bad working condition. An occasional paper titled Agricultural Pesticide Application - Concepts for Improvements is available in English and Spanish in our Publications section. Inadequate application techniques are often the reason why biological products, such as non-chemical alternatives to synthetic pesticides, fail on a commercial scale. FAO is addressing this problem with a Programme for Safe and Efficient Application of Agro-chemicals and Bio-products which includes awareness creation, technical advice and the formulation of Standards for safer and more efficient application equipment and guidelines on the introduction of the respective regulatory framework:
Click on the links to view the Guidelines
Guidelines on Minimum Requirements for Agricultural Pesticide Application Equipment
This programme together with the equipment standards in particular, are designed to complement the FAO Code of Conduct on the Distribution and Use of Pesticides and to support the programme on Safe Management of Pesticides. The main objective of modern sustainable pest management is to reduce the reliance on synthetic pesticides and enhance biosystems that allow a balance between beneficial fauna and flora and pests. This concept, described as integrated pest management (IPM) requires, as well, safer, more directed and less wasteful techniques for the application of pesticides or other pest control agents. These techniques reduce the undesired impact of pesticides on non-target areas or organisms like beneficial insects which are fundamental for allowing pest management with less or eventually without synthetic pesticides.