Pesticide Registration Toolkit

Risk mitigation

Risk mitigation measures are actions that should be taken to reduce the risk for human health or the environment of the use of a pesticide. These include the use of personal protective equipment to reduce occupational exposure, safe handling procedures to avoid spills, not spraying the pesticide when a crop blooms to protect pollinators, respecting an unsprayed buffer zone to reduce exposure of surface water, etc.

The selection of risk mitigation measures is therefore an important aspect of pesticide registration. In some cases, the use of a pesticide may only be acceptable if one or more risk mitigation measures are implemented.

Where the label provides legally mandatory use directions, the registration authority tends to include the risk mitigation measures on the label. These then must be followed by the user of the product. In countries where this is not the case, pesticide registration may be restricted to users who can be expected to follow the risk mitigation measures and where the use of the pesticide can be monitored and enforced.

Criteria for mitigation measures to be effective

Many measures can be proposed to reduce the risk of a pesticide. However, not all of these may be realistic under the specific use conditions for which the product is to be registered. For risk mitigation measures to be effective, they should preferably meet several criteria:

  • The measure should have been demonstrated, or is likely, to be effective under local conditions.
  • The measure should be practicable for the pesticide user (e.g. the farmer), and should preferably not compromise pesticide product efficacy.
  • It should be possible to communicate the measure to the user in an effective manner (e.g. via the product label; through agricultural extension services).
  • The measure should have a reasonable possibility of enforcement (where relevant).
  • If possible, a quantitative estimate of the efficacy of the measure should be available, so that its effect can be incorporated into the risk assessment.

Continue to >> Feasibility check tool

Continue to >> Inventory of risk mitigation measures

Visit the interactive feasibility check tool to assess whether a specific risk mitigation measure is likely to be feasible under local conditions of use.

The inventory of risk mitigation measures can be used to identify options for reducing human health and environmental risks of a pesticide.