Less pesticide was sprayed in 2006 than in recent years, according to the Crop Protection Association.

The CPA has announced that there was a drop of 3% in active ingredients applied in 2006, which was down to a 3% decline in the area of land with cereals and increased use of lower-dose products.

Cereals account for over two thirds of pesticide use in arable crops.

In the garden sector, sales were affected by a late spring with lawns slow to grow. The reduction in active ingredients also reflected switching to more modern products, as well as a move towards ready-mixed very dilute products.

Peter Sanguinetti, CPA chief executive, said: “We are fully committed to promoting best practice through the Voluntary Initiative to benefit the environment.”

Click for more detailed sales data.

.