Farmer in Kenya using Pesticide

Farmer in Kenya using Pesticide

The EU’s green deal could have adverse effects on the Kenyan agricultural industry if pesticides are banned.

Kenyan experts say that the ban could cost over €1.2 billion in losses while causing a food crisis in the country that will not tackle the growing population.

With agriculture as one of the major exporting industries of Kenya, there is a divide between people in favor and people against the pesticide ban.

Here are the ground realities:

For the Ban

The EU’s proposed ban includes around 200 chemicals. Political and environmental activists have called for the ban as the Pest Control Products (PCPs) import have more than doubled in the last four years. Thus, as per the EU, the current agricultural policy poses a serious threat to public health and the environment.

The activists propagate the use of non-toxic products for the crops. They also paint a picture of the concealment of the truth from Kenyan farmers about endangering public health.

Against the Ban

People against the ban include Kenyan agricultural experts and the farming community in general.

According to The Star, experts from several independent institutions in Kenya say that the failure to protect agriculture could be detrimental to the economy. Food production will take a massive hit in a country that already needs to increase it by 56% to meet the 2050 conditions.

Experts say that pesticides are meant to be toxic in order to protect the crops from numerous pests in Kenyan conditions. Without the pesticides that the “Pro-Ban” activists are against, Kenya will suffer losses in its most exportable crops.

It’ll severely affect the smallholders who own agricultural land. These farmers produce 90% of Kenya’s fresh output. Without pesticides, organic farming on a large scale is not possible.

Are pesticides safe?

According to experts, it’s the handling of pesticides that damages health and the environment. All pesticides in Kenya go through a rigorous testing process that ensures the safety of humans, animals, and the environment.

It is an agreed issue that the government needs to take strict measures to ensure proper handling of pesticides by farmers. Though already practiced, the agricultural land and crops need to be regularly tested to ensure the standards and protect people and the environment.