Thai Ministry of Industry and Agriculture insists to ban 2 farming chemicals in Thailand, alternative bio-substances not yet available

Bangkok –

The prohibition of paraquat and chlorpyrifos will continue to be implemented and both substances will be listed as ‘most’ hazardous chemicals in the Hazardous Substances B.E. 2563 (2020) act, industry minister Suriya Juangroongruangkit said yesterday.

A working committee had voted in the Ministry of Industry to insist on the continued prohibition of two popular agricultural chemicals from production, import, export, and/or possession under chemical type 4 list of Hazardous Substances B.E. 2563 (2020) while glyphosate is already listed in the regulations for limited use.

The vote was conducted after related departments and local farmers had demanded the Ministry of Industry to revise the chemical bans which had been officially implemented nationwide in June.

Suriya told the Associated Press: “The committee had agreed by 20 to 4 votes to proceed with the implementation and ban of the Hazardous Substances as we had made it clear that paraquat and chlorpyrifos had been prohibited for its notorious and dangerous substances that affect human beings.”

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Agriculture is still searching for effective alternatives and instead recommends some organic pesticides/herbicides which slightly cost higher than the chemical but provide the same effectiveness in terms of controlling and killing weeds, insects and pests.

Apai Suttisunk an inspector-general from the Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry told Thai reporters: “While effective alternatives are still not available, farmers are recommended to replace chemicals with organic alternatives at the moment. A small group of farmers could share heavy machinery provided by the authorities to do large plots of agriculture, which would also help reduce the production cost.”

“The Ministry has also been considering emergency measures to help farmers cope with anticipated rising production costs resulting from the ban on the use of paraquat and glyphosate.”

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