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Thailand's chemical pesticide ban troubles farmers, industries

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Thailand's chemical pesticide ban troubles farmers, industries

By Patpicha Tanakasempipat



FILE PHOTO: Phon Tongmak, a rubber tree farmer (back), rows a boat in floodwaters in his rubber plantation with his friend at Cha-uat district in Nakhon Si Thammarat Province, southern Thailand, January 18, 2017. Picture taken January 18, 2017. REUTERS/Surapan Boonthanom/File Photo


BANGKOK (Reuters) - Thailand enforced a ban on Monday on two agricultural chemicals widely regarded as toxic to humans, prompting claims from farmers they will face losses, while environmental campaigners welcomed a step towards sustainability.


Many countries have already prohibited paraquat and chlorpyrifos, which are found in pesticides or insecticides.


Some 10 million farming households in Thailand, one of the biggest exporters of natural rubber and sugar, use paraquat to kill weed on palm, rubber, sugarcane, corn, and cassava plantations.


"Without paraquat, Thai farmers will face losses in key crops, because there are no alternatives," said Sukan Sungwanna, secretary-general of the Federation of Safe Agriculture.


Thai farmers use chlorpyrifos to kill worms on fruit, but can use alternatives.


The farmers' group last week submitted a petition to an administrative court to repeal the ban, which came into force on Monday after the chemicals were added to a Type 4 list on Thailand's Hazardous Substance Act last month.


That means their production, import, export, distribution and possession are banned. Flouting the rule could mean up to 10 years in jail or a fine of one million baht ($31,575.62), or both.


Thailand is also drafting regulation to impose a zero tolerance policy on imported crops produced using the chemicals, sparking concern among local industry groups.


The food and livestock industries rely on wheat and soybean imports, mostly from the United States and Brazil and they have asked the Thai government to instead maintain limits on maximum allowable chemical residues.


In November, Thailand reversed a ban on the herbicide glyphosate, allowing its use to continue within maximum residue limits (MRL) after the U.S. government asked for the ban to be postponed.


Non-profit group BioThai said human health should come before business.


"The ban is a transition to sustainable agriculture," said Witoon Lianchamroon, the group's director.



-- © Copyright Reuters 2020-06-01
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Private sector protests start of chlorpyrifos, paraquat ban

By The Nation




The Thai Chamber of Commerce will present its study on the economic cost of banning chlorpyrifos and paraquat to the prime minister, in a bid to have the ban suspended for a year.


Chamber chairman Kalin Sarasin said a letter explaining the effects of Industry Ministry’s ban, which went into effect today (June 1) will be sent to Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha.


The private sector will propose a compromise of limiting imports of the agricultural chemicals, which it says are still necessary, with the limit to be decided by the Public Health Ministry.


Agricultural businesses have requested a year to adjust to the ban, which they warn will affect production and costs, leading to higher product prices.


The Chamber will present the study, detailing the problems and outcomes of the ban, within a few weeks.


Meanwhile, farmers must return their stocks of chlorpyrifos and paraquat to shops within 90 days to avoid fines of up to Bt1 million or imprisonment for up to 10 years, warned Deputy Agriculture and Cooperatives Minister Mananya Thaiset.


She said the Department of Agriculture will be responsible for collecting the surplus stock.


Certificates allowing possession of the substances became invalid as soon as the ban was imposed.


Meanwhile retail shops must return the chemicals to the importers or manufacturers within 120 days.


Importers and manufacturers must then report the quantity returned to the Agricultural Regulation Office within 270 days.


Disposal of Thailand’s surplus chlorpyrifos and paraquat will be strictly monitored, with fines up to Bt1 million and/or imprisonment of up to 10 years for violators.


The department has sent guidelines on the ban to relevant organisations around the country and collaborated with every province to underline their importance.


Source: https://www.nationthailand.com/news/30388891



-- © Copyright The Nation Thailand 2020-06-02

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8 minutes ago, webfact said:

Bt1 million or imprisonment for up to 10 years,

What  utter  nonsense.

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I can see farmers hiding stocks out of the way and using what they have left. Whose going to be checking the farmers?

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maybe the 2 million thais without a job can go whack weeds in the family farm in stead of chemicals ?


how did people live 100 years ago before all this "needed" dangerous chemicals


it is not compatible with life

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Delaying banning of a pesticide based on the request of the US government?  Is this the same country’s government has sold itself to business interests and does not give a <deleted> about the environment ... not only their own public lands?

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3 hours ago, Bender Rodriguez said:

maybe the 2 million thais without a job can go whack weeds in the family farm in stead of chemicals ?

You think that the Thais are going to "whack weeds" for THB 200/300 a Day? No way they will work for 10 hrs a day for that.Maybe 2 hrs in the morning and that's it.

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Posted (edited)
On 6/1/2020 at 8:07 PM, snoop1130 said:

farmers they will face losses

so they prefer to continue their comfortable way of earning money on the cost of those who get severe illness or die because of their comfortability.

Easy for them, they don't see their victims suffering, don't see their victim's life in shambles,  they  don't see the families of their victims with broken hearts ... just unhappy to experience money losses. 

Are those farmers evern worth of spitting on them?


Ahh ... and those troubled companies - troubled about their ill gained fortunes. Does anybody believe they are troubled abot people they cause to suffer because of their greed?

Edited by sweatalot

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