The Amenity Forum statement regarding chemical use in weed, pest and disease management Published 16 May 2019
Item Code: News 7
Kersten (UK) Ltd is a member of the Amenity Forum.
The Amenity Forum is the UK based, industry led voluntary initiative for the promotion of “best practice” principles within the amenity sector when using pesticides – herbicides, fungicides, insecticides, algaecides and other products to control pests and diseases in this diverse sector.
The Amenity Forum published the following Statement May 2019 in light of recent media coverage regarding awards being made in United States Courts against chemical manufacturers.
The Amenity Forum is a UK Initiative which works with Government and industry promoting best practice in maintaining safe and healthy public spaces fit for purpose. The Amenity Forum is independent of any commercial interests in the sector. We were set up for two key reasons – firstly it brings the sector together so we could promote best practice and demonstrate to Government that voluntarily we can continue to drive up professional standards and ensure weed, pest and disease management can be undertaken to produce safe and healthy amenity spaces. Secondly, we are charged by Government to help deliver the UK National Action Plan arising from the Sustainable Use Directive implementation.
Each year we report on behalf of the sector on how we are doing in meeting the targets. Whilst having this role, we receive no direct Government funding and so we levy from organisations in the sector, an annual membership fee to help us undertake our objectives. Every organisation committing to our objectives and becoming members pay exactly the same. We now have some 70 organisations supporting our aims covering all aspects of amenity management. In addition we have a significant number of local authorities in associate membership. We have produced specific guidance notes for local authorities to help answer questions on glyphosate and other matters. In producing guidance for the sector, the Forum would never advocate any practice which is not regarded as safe or of danger to public health. Indeed, we promote integrated management practice making optimum use of both non chemical and authorised chemicals to produce effective weed management in an economic and efficient way.
Chemicals applied professionally and targeted, remain very often the most effective solution in many situations. All chemicals used in weed, pest and disease management have to go through extensive testing and authorisation. Actives for use in the UK, such as glyphosate, are scrutinised by scientific experts and only authorised after extensive testing and full review of all the science and evidence. Any product such as Round Up then must be approved for use in the UK again following extensive analysis. This process is probably the most comprehensive in the world and certainly greater than for many household products. We would urge that all decisions are based on science and evidence. As said at the start, we promote integrated approaches and urge everyone to use professional operators who can fully demonstrate their commitment to assured practice and commit to the aims of the Amenity Forum. Authorised chemicals used correctly and professionally are safe and help create healthy public spaces fit for purpose. What happens in amenity management impacts upon every UK citizen every day’’.