Collection of EU agchem application data an uphill task
It is possible to collect data on how pesticides are applied in the EU, but it is labour intensive and depends on the goodwill of farmers, concludes an external report commissioned by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). The Authority funded a project to collect such data, which will be needed in its planned implementation of cumulative risk assessment (CRA) of pesticides in the EU. The researchers were successful in collecting detailed information through farm questionnaires, but note that the quantity of data collected was greater than anticipated, and that some farmers refused to continue part-way through the project due to the amount of effort required. The EFSA has yet to reach any conclusions based on the report. However, it had previously acknowledged that its “very complex” CRA plans represent one of the “biggest challenges” for the future.