CropLife India, an association of 18 R & D driven member companies, today, organized a one of its kind, a workshop for pesticide dealers at Bharuch. The workshop was organized with the help of Kruti Charitable Trust, implementing NGO partner of CropLife India at Ambedkar Bhavan, near Collector's Office, Bharuch.
The workshop saw more than 100 pesticide dealers across Bharuch district, participate and delve on the rising issue of counterfeit, spurious, substandard and unregistered/unlicensed pesticides. Vijay Singh Solanki, Deputy Director of Agriculture - Extension; Panchal, Assistant Director of Agriculture - Quality Control; P.S. Rank, Deputy Director of Agriculture - Training; Professor Pathak and Professor Divyeshbhai Patel from College of Agriculture, Bharuch, were the key officials present on this occasion.
"Presence of significant share of non-genuine pesticide in the Indian market, which can be illegal, counterfeit, spurious, adulterated or substandard, is a matter of concern. These products are unable to control the pests and may cause considerable harm to soil and environment as well as production loss. Dealers play an important role in the entire supply chain, ensuring farmers receive quality pesticides," said Asitava Sen, Chief Executive Officer, CropLife India.
The workshop focused on the various ways of detecting counterfeit, spurious, substandard and unregistered/unlicensed pesticides. The Dealers shared their challenges faced on the ground and the various member company representatives shared their perspective on probing the source of pesticides. Farmer education by dealers formed an important part of the entire discussion.
It may be noted that Government of India, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers' Welfare, Department of Agriculture, Co-operation and Farmers' Welfare (Plant Protection Division) has reached out to all licensed dealer/retailers of pesticides multiple times over the past five years, to be aware of counterfeit, spurious, substandard and unregistered/unlicensed pesticides. The Letter to dealers was sent under the Grow Safe Food campaign of Government of India and CropLife India was mandated to outreach to as many retailers as possible, across the nation.
The workshop engaged the dealers on the following key facts (part of Letter to Dealers from Government of India) -
1. Refrain from stocking/distributing/exhibiting/sale of counterfeit/fake products.
2. Do not stock/distribute/exhibit/sell products that do not possess a valid certificate of registration and license from the State Government under the provisions of Insecticides Act, 1968 and Insecticides Rules, 1971.
3. It is mandatory under the law to have a valid pesticides licence in order to sell, stock or exhibit for sale or to distribute pesticides.
4. All dealers/retailers of pesticides products should procure their stock from legitimate sources with proper bill/invoice.
5. It is mandatory to provide a bill or invoice in the form prescribed by law with details of batch no, manufacturing and expiry dates, to customers/farmers on sale of crop protection products.
6. Do not sell pesticides past their date of expiry.
CropLife India has an ongoing anti-counterfeit mass awareness campaign in the villages of Amod, Bharuch, Karjan and Padara districts of Gujarat. CropLife India has tied up with Kruti Charitable Trust, implementing partner NGO, for this campaign, who would reach out to more than 175 villages across the district, focussed on raising awareness on counterfeit, spurious, substandard and unregistered/unlicensed pesticides. Various activities like rallies, puppet shows, video shows, messaging via loudspeakers and wall writings are being done simultaneously, to educate farmers and create awareness that spurious/illegal products must not be used despite compelling prices.
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