AGP - Latin America & Caribbean

Latin America & Caribbean

The FAO Prevention and Disposal of Obsolete Pesticide Programme currently provides assistance to Paraguay.

Refer to the country list for summaries of current activities of the FAO programme in each country. For more information kindly contact OPGROUP.

FAO helps reduce risks from pesticides in the Caribbean

17 June 2013, Bridgetown - From 10-14 June, national delegates from 15 Caribbean countries attended the 18th Meeting of the Coordinating Group for Pesticide Control Boards of the Caribbean (CGPC) in Trinidad and Tobago, to decide on action to reduce risks from pesticides.

At the Opening Ceremony, Head of the Insect Vector Control Division in the Ministry of Health of Trinidad and Tobago, Dr Clyde Teeluckdharry, saidWe need to balance the risks to humans, plants, animals and the environment posed by the presence of pesticides and toxic chemicals against the benefits to society, and this can only be achieved primarily through the development of a robust legislative framework and public education.” 

The CGPC meeting endorsed a 4-year work plan that FAO experts will help facilitate. The plan covers setting up regional schemes to evaluate and register pesticides and share information among countries; assistance to farmers to find the safest methods for controlling pests and diseases in their crops; helping countries to deal with empty pesticide containers; and training for medical professionals to recognize and treat cases of pesticide poisoning.

With financial support from the European Union (EU), FAO has been helping Caribbean countries to address priorities in pest and pesticide management including the safe disposal of obsolete pesticide stocks that have lingered in the region for up to 30 years; finding the safest methods for controlling pests in agriculture and homes; reducing risks from pesticides to the environment and the health of both local populations and tourists; and communicating with farmers, politicians and the general public about pesticide dangers and the positive actions that can be taken.

So far, with FAO support, Caribbean countries have located nearly 300 tons of obsolete pesticides that include some of the most dangerous chemicals that have been banned internationally such as dieldrin and heptachlor. This information is being used to plan a clean sweep of the region in order to safely dispose of all existing obsolete pesticides at an estimated cost of US$ 2 million.

Overall, FAO is hoping to mobilize about US$ 8 million to support this work over the course of the programme which started in 2009 and will continue until 2017.

For more information:
Vyjayanthi Lopez: Plant Production and Protection Officer, FAO Sub-Regional Office for the Caribbean, Barbados

REPORT FOR THE PERIOD 1st September, 2011 – 20th January, 2012. 

During the above-mentioned period, obsolete pesticides inventory data was received from Ms. Genia Oxley of Barbados, Mr. Hugh Ho-Young of Jamaica, Mr. Richard Glasgow of Trinidad & Tobago, Mr. Egbert Wallace of The Bahamas and Dr. Malverne Spencer of Antigua and Barbuda.
Ms. Genia Oxley continued to submit information in response to queries from the reporting officer (RO), on obsolete pesticides inventory information already submitted. The RO had the opportunity to meet with Ms. Oxley in Saint Lucia in November 2011, while she was attending the workshop on the Rotterdam Convention and Pesticide Registration. Some of the queries of the RO were dealt with then, but a few more have been sent to Ms Oxley since that time. The RO is expecting to finish the Barbados data entry and validation on receipt upon receipt of the missing information.


The RO is expecting additional information from some new sites which have been located in Jamaica and which are presently being inventoried.


Mr. Egbert Wallace commenced the submission of data with information on seven (7) sites during the month of December, 2011.


At the end of December, 2011, Dr Malverne Spencer submitted additional information on obsolete pesticides found at one (1) site.


Mr. Richard Glasgow commenced sending inventory information from initial sites surveyed to ensure that submitted forms were completed as required. In December 2011, the officers of the Pesticides Inspectorate received training in the use of PSMS. The focus of the training was on (i) the registration and (ii) entry of obsolete pesticides data, components of the PSMS. After the training, the RO was given a CD with obsolete pesticides data from seven (7) sites/stores.

To date, the countries which have submitted obsolete pesticides data are as follows:

  •  Saint Kitts & Nevis (validated)
  •  Antigua & Barbuda (validated)
  •  Saint Vincent & The Grenadines (validated)
  •  Saint Lucia (validated)
  •  Cuba
  •  Barbados
  •  Belize (validated)
  •  Jamaica
  •  Trinidad & Tobago
  •  The Bahamas

The countries from which the RO is still expecting obsoletes pesticides inventory data and the deadlines for the submission of that data, which were agreed to at the 16th Meeting of the Coordinating Group of Pesticides Control Boards of the Caribbean (CGPC) in Jamaica in June 2011 and revised at the Training Workshop for the Rotterdam Convention and Pesticides Registration in Saint Lucia, in November 2011, were as follows:

• Dominica: Director of Agriculture to investigate status of inventory exercise.
• Haiti: to seek funding assistance from FAO and submit data by end of December 2011. Not sure of the status.
• Dominican Republic: (absent from November meeting) end of December 2011.
• Grenada: did not find any obsolete pesticides and stated they have no information to submit.
• Guyana: will submit data already collected and will finish by end of November 2011 (see below).
• Trinidad: Did obsolete pesticides inventory training in September/October 2011 and intend to submit data by end of December 2011(see below).
• Jamaica: has already submitted data and hopes to complete submission by end of December 2011 (see below).
• Cuba: have already submitted some information, but not in the required PSMS format. Unsure of the status, or if it will be submitted as required.
• The Bahamas: participated in obsolete pesticides inventory training programme in Trinidad in September/October 2011 and to submit data by end of December 2011 (see below).
• Other islands/countries who had already submitted data, indicated their intentions to use the extended period (until December 2011) to search for more obsolete pesticides.

In January 2012 the RO received updates from the following countries:
• Barbados colleagues stated that they are following up on queries about inventory data sent to them, and will submit responses soonest.
• Saint Kitts and Nevis informed the RO they have conducted another survey and found no additional data to submit.
• Jamaica indicated that they are still in the process of conducting the inventory exercise and have located additional sites/stores. They expect to submit the new data and any responses to queries soonest.
• Guyana contacted the RO and informed him that they have completed the inventory exercise and expects to be submitting the information before the end of January 2012.
• Trinidad & Tobago continue to conduct their inventory exercise and also enter some of that information into PSMS, with e-copies being sent to the RO for validation.
• The Bahamas informed the RO that their inventory data would be submitted by the end of January 2012.


The Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) and the Rotterdam Convention Secretariat, with the kind consent of the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Forestry and Fisheries - Saint Lucia, convened a regional training workshop on the Rotterdam Convention and Pesticides Registration, in Saint Lucia from 8 – 11th November, 2011. The objectives of the workshop were as follows:
1. To review the regional status of the Rotterdam Convention Ratification and Implementation in the Caribbean and identification of ways to deal with challenges in order to advance national implementation.
2. To advance pesticides registration capacity in the region through identification of needs, gaps and barriers and identifying solutions.
Participants from throughout the region (Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Belize, Cuba, Dominica, Grenada, Guyana, Jamaica, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago) attended the four (4) day workshop, which was facilitated by FAO personnel (Mr. Mark Davis, Dr. Vyjayanthi Lopez), FAO consultants (Dr. Gene Pollard and the RO) and Mr. Gerold Wyrwal of the Rotterdam Convention Secretariat. Presentations were also made by Ms Kimberly Nesci of the United States Environmental Protection Agency, Mr. Michael Ramsay of the Jamaica Pesticides Control Authority and Ms Alies van Sauers-Miller of the Suriname Pesticides Control Board. 
Representatives of countries which were not yet Parties to the Rotterdam Convention, promised to make strong representation to their respective responsible Ministers to try to initiate, or finalise the process.
With respect to pesticides registration, participants generally agreed that a regional registration scheme was desirable, but with different territories’ pesticides authorities at different levels of operation, development and efficiency, the exact way forward was yet to be worked out. Several recommendations towards the creation of a regional pesticides registration scheme were put forward by participants.
One of the main tasks to be done first, it was agreed, was to get formal recognition of the Coordinating Group of Pesticides Control Boards of the Caribbean (CGPC) by the Caribbean Community Secretariat (CARICOM) and other regional institutions. Then, to have the work, needs and recommendations of the CGPC included on the agenda at relevant high level Ministerial meetings.
The RO, with the assistance of Ms Marvo Desir, Data Entry Clerk, helped with the logistical planning of the workshop at the national level. 

During the period 5 – 9th December, 2011, the RO conducted a Pan-American Health Organisation (PAHO)-sponsored workshop for personnel of the Pesticides & Toxic Chemicals Inspectorate in the Ministry of Health of Trinidad and Tobago. The objectives of the workshop were as follows:
1. Install the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO) – Pesticide Stock Management System (PSMS) at the Pesticide Control Board in Trinidad and Tobago.
2. Train the Pesticide Control Board Staff in the use of PSMS for both the obsolete pesticides inventory and pesticides registration.
3. Assist in setting up the excel file and entering the current pesticide register so it can be uploaded into PSMS.

The workshop afforded the six (6) participants the opportunity to learn about the PSMS database generally, enter obsolete pesticides inventory data into the database, learn about the pesticides registration component of PSMS and, enter pesticides registration data into PSMS. They were also able to observe the types of reports that the PSMS could generate. Pesticides registration information from the Trinidad excel template was transferred to the PSMS excel registration template, for uploading into PSMS.

Participants, who included a Ministry of Health Computer Systems Analyst, also submitted comments on their concerns and suggestions as to how the PSMS database might be improved.  These were submitted to the PSMS Administrator by the RO in a mission report.

The RO was assisted by Ms Marvo Desir, data entry clerk, in the conduct of the workshop. The enthusiasm and cooperation of the participants throughout the workshop must be commended.

During the reporting period, Ms. Marvo Desir, Data Entry Clerk, continued to enter the majority of the data submitted from territories indicated in Section (1) of this report. She assisted the RO in the local planning and logistics for the organisation and hosting of the regional workshop on pesticides registration and the Rotterdam Convention mentioned in Section (2) of this report. She also assisted the RO in the conduct of the PSMS workshop in Trinidad and Tobago, which is mentioned in Section (3) of this report.

During the training workshop mentioned in Section (3) of this report, the RO was able to explore possible additional uses of the PSMS with Mr. Hasmath Ali, Acting Registrar of the Trinidad and Tobago Pesticides & Toxic Chemicals Inspectorate. It was agreed that the PSMS has great potential for assisting authorities to manage pesticides stocks nationally and possibly, regionally. Mr. Ali agreed to look at more possible uses for PSMS in Trinidad and Tobago.
The RO intends to continue to work with the Saint Lucia Pesticides & Toxic Chemicals Control Board (PTCCB) Registrar/Secretary, to explore ways in which the PTCCB Board can make more use of the PSMS database to manage pesticides locally. The PTCCB has kindly agreed to give the RO access to relevant information for that purpose. 

• Countries which have not yet submitted obsolete pesticides inventory data to the RO should make every effort to do so as soon as possible. This will facilitate the forward movement of this project.
• Countries which have already completed submission of the obsolete pesticides inventory data should be introduced to other aspects of the PSMS, to determine its feasibility for use to manage pesticides stocks at the national level. They, like Trinidad and Tobago, may be able to suggest recommendations for improvement of the PSMS database and also think about the possibility of its use at the regional level to facilitate harmonized registration and de-registration activities.
• Any review/update in national/regional pesticides legislation, may want to refer to the potential use (or incorporate use of) of the PSMS at the different user levels (e.g. Data viewer, registrar, data entry, data validator, administrator).
• The RO would like to continue to express thanks and appreciation to the Ministry of Agriculture, Lands, Forestry and Fisheries (Saint Lucia) for their continued assistance and support to this FAO Sub-regional project.