A drone sprays pesticide in a field in Duchang County of Jiujiang City, east China's Jiangxi Province, July 2, 2015. (Xinhua/Fu Jianbin)
A drone sprays pesticide in a field in Duchang County of Jiujiang City, east China's Jiangxi Province, July 2, 2015. (Xinhua/Fu Jianbin)

The East African Community (EAC) bloc plans to harmonize member states’ pesticide regulations in order to boost food safety, officials said on Thursday.

Paul Ngaruiya, manager registration Kenya Pest Control Products Board told journalists in Nairobi that currently each of the six member states has a different regime for licensing pesticides in their country.

“The trading bloc is keen to have a harmonized system for pesticide regulations that will promote food safety as well as intra-regional trade,” said Ngaruiya during the fifth China International AgroChemical and Crop Protection Exhibition CAC Africa Summit in Nairobi.

The two-day event was organized by CCPIT Sub-Council of Chemical Industry (CCPIT CHEM) in association with Kenya’s Egerton University and brought together pesticide management authorities and associations from Kenya, China, Tanzania and Ethiopia.

Some 26 exhibitors from China, India and Kenya engaged in the pesticide, fertilizer and logistics sectors are attending the event.

Ngaruiya said that the harmonization process is proceeding well as three guidelines on the efficacy of trials, pesticide residue trials and pesticide registration data requirements have already been approved by the EAC council of ministers and forwarded to be implemented by the respective national governments.

“Each country has a different procedure for the harmonization of pesticide control measures and could even include amendment of national laws,” Ngaruiya added.

“Once a single system is in place, there will be mutual recognition of pesticides such that agro-chemicals approved in one country will be applicable in other member states,” he observed. Enditem

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