African growers concerned about EU stance on pesticide residues

The European Union’s hardline stance on import tolerances for pesticide substances can cause a lot of headaches for African food producers. The EU has committed to taking into account environmental aspects when assessing requests for import tolerances for pesticide substances no longer approved in the bloc, while respecting WTO standards and obligations.

The new stance on pesticide residues has implications on African farmers who believe the requirement to meet these targets if they want to sell their products to Europe could become a major hurdle to the trade.

“The situation is very sensitive and we cannot run away from it,” the CEO of Kenya’s Fresh Produce Consortium, Okisegere Ojepat, told EURACTIV. According to Ojepat, the EU is pushing Africa to implement their own specific targets without offering sufficient alternatives.

“[The EU] is saying ‘close that door’ without showing our people where the exit door is, while they should be able to offer solutions and alternatives that work equivalently,” he concluded.


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