The fruit harvest is in full swing and the first apples and pears of the new harvest are appearing on store shelves… What about the food safety of our fruit? Rest assured, this too is controlled by the FAVV and our growers know what they are doing.
Crop protection products
Like all inspections, this one is unannounced and it can sometimes happen that nobody is at home… But here we are lucky. Inspector Nathalie introduces herself and explains the purpose of our visit. The control can begin…
We start with a “material” control: inspection of the premises, the equipment and compliance with hygiene regulations, … Very important in a plant production company is how the crop protection products are stored and used. Since most pesticides are not without danger, they must be kept in a separate room (or cabinet). Here the choice was made to use locked cabinets on which the sign “poison” was affixed.
Nathalie checks the stock thoroughly, because the rules are strict
there must be no products that are not or are no longer approved, they must be kept in their original packaging, the label must be clearly legible and not damaged, etc. Next to the cabinet, the empty packages that have been rinsed out are ready to be taken to the collection point of Phytofar-Recover, a non-profit organization that processes and destroys them in an environmentally friendly way.
Then it is the turn of the spraying equipment and the refrigeration areas.
Sprayers must be inspected every three years to ensure that the crop protection products are used as efficiently as possible and in the most environmentally friendly way. Everything is in order at this company, which is also certified for its self-checking system, just like some 15,000 other companies in the agricultural and horticultural sector.Registers
Then comes the control of documents.
In order to guarantee traceability and thus limit possible risks to public health (for example, a foodstuff containing too many residues), growers must keep a number of registers. Plant protection products (and biocides) supplied must be recorded in an IN register. Data on the use of plant protection products and biocides must be recorded in a use register. This includes the name of the product used, the date of application, on which crop, the dose used, the date of harvest or sale, etc.