Like other chemical, medical or veterinary products, pesticides can pose risks if not used properly. Their registration and use are therefore strictly regulated and controlled.
Pesticide registration involves rigorous scrutiny by independent scientific experts to ensure products are safe for consumers, users and the environment. Typically more than 200 separate scientific studies are required as part of this approval process.
Enormous progress has been made in recent years to develop improved crop protection products that are target-specific, degrade quickly in the environment and do not accumulate in the food chain.
Ensuring each new pesticide is safe for consumers and the environment can take up to ten years at a cost of more than £150 million.