Because of the extensive data packages required for authorization to market plant protection products, growers face increasing difficulties in gaining authorization for “minor uses”. Minor uses of pesticides are uses on niche crops with a high economic value for farmers, but usually of low economic interest for the agro-pesticide industry. This leads to a lack of authorized products on the market for farmers to use on these crops which in turn can lead to illegal uses or to loss of crop production. These crops include most vegetables, fruit, nurseries, flowers, forest trees and some arable crops. It is estimated that overall they represent more than € 70 billion per year, which equates to 22% of the total EU plant production value.
To address this problem in a more coherent way the European Commission (EC) has established the EU Minor Uses Coordination Facility (MUCF).
The mission of the Facility is 'to enable farmers in the EU to produce high quality crops by filling minor uses gaps through efficient collaboration to improve availability of chemical and non-chemical tools within an integrated pest management (IPM) framework’.
Jointly funded, initially, by the EU and the governments of France, Germany and the Netherlands, the Facility is hosted by the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organisation (EPPO) in Paris.
The Coordination Facility will liaise with all Member States, growers associations and other organizations active internationally in the field of minor uses, such as OECD and IR-4 project. The Coordination Facility will stimulate and support further harmonization e.g. in relation to crop group and pest group definitions and if necessary develop guidance documents.
The Coordination Facility will maintain the European Minor Use Database (EUMUDA) as a key structure to identify minor uses gaps, share information on them and cooperate to find solutions.
The Coordination Facility will contribute to the development of non-chemical and IPM routes to solve minor use problems. In that respect the Coordination Facility will establish a strong link with the C-IPM ERANET, aiming to find sustainable methods to solve minor use gaps.
Full functioning of the Coordination Facility will not be achieved instantly. The first year of the Coordination Facility has been used to lay the groundwork for the years to come. The number of quantitative outputs was therefore not as high in the first year as it will be in subsequent years.
|1 to 3 November 2017, Dublin
Meeting of the Horizontal Expert Group and some Commodity Expert Groups
|25 to 27 April 2017, Fort Collins, Colorado, USA
"Biopesticides Workshop for the IR-4 Program" on how to integrate biopesticides into conventional minor crop IPM systems
|11 to 12 April 2017, Budapest, Hungary
5th Annual Eastern Europe Regulatory Conference: Registration of Plant Protection Products
|15 to 16 March 2017, Brussels, Belgium
ECPA-ECCA Regulatory Conference Crop Protection