New regulations threatened to force farmers to undertake a separate certificate of competence before being able to buy certain rodenticides that came under enhanced stewardship requirements.
Recognising assurance schemes
But a derogation recognising certain assurance schemes provide competence has been agreed for 2018, meaning that more than 95,000 farmers will not need to undertake separate training.
For poultry farmers, they are the Lion code, Duck Assurance Scheme, Laid in Britain, Quality British Turkey and Red Tractor Farm Assurance.
Members of the above schemes can simply present proof they are accredited at the point of purchase.
The Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use (CRRU) was set up to implement the new rules surrounding competence, and has worked with assurance schemes to ensure alignment.
Red Tractor’s head of external affairs, Philippa Wiltshire, said: “This is good news for our farmers who are automatically demonstrating CRRU compliance by passing their Red Tractor audit.
“It also shows a unified approach and a commitment from the industry to use professional rodenticides responsibly.”
The new rules are designed to prevent non-target species from ingesting poison aimed at pests such as rats or mice. Requirements now prevent routine permanent baiting and require bait to be placed only where they are continuously effective.
A site survey and risk assessment considering watercourses and populations of non-target species should also be undertaken before treatment.