Plant protection products are mainly used to protect plants and plant products in agriculture, forestry and horticulture from attacks by fungi, pests and competing plants. Plant protection products can be either chemical or biological pesticides.
A chemical plant protection product is a mixture consisting of one or several active substances and one or several other substances. The active substances have the protective effect intended.
A biological pesticide, which is a biotechnical organism; i.e. a living organism, is the active part that provides the protective effect of a product.
Import or sale
If you intend to import or sell a plant protection product on the Swedish market you need to apply for authorisation from the Swedish Chemicals Agency.
Assessment of plant protection products
In the case of plant protection products which are pesticides or which consist of micro-organisms, the Swedish Chemicals Agency assesses and decides on authorisation according to the EU Plant Protection Products Regulation. In the case of biological plant protection products consisting of nematodes, insects or arachnids, the Agency makes assessments and decisions according to national provisions in the Environmental Code and in the Plant Protection Products Ordinance (2006:1010).
An important part of the authorisation process is to ensure that there is enough knowledge about the risks connected with the product. By assessing the risks and deciding on the conditions for use, damage or unacceptable levels can be prevented. Mutual principles and assessment and decision criteria within the EU aim at securing a high level of protection of human and animal health and of the environment, and to improve the internal market.
The Swedish Chemicals Agency assesses the health and environmental risks and whether the product would be efficient in the area of use in question. In cooperation with the National Food Agency we assess the residues in crops which, if there are any, also form the basis for authorisation of a product. When an application for authorisation is assessed, the need for the product is not taken into account.
Cooperation in the northern zone of the EU
EU member countries cooperate in assessing plant protection products. The work is carried out in three zones with different argricultural and environmental conditions: the northern, central and southern zones. The northern zone comprises Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Lithuania and Sweden. Norway is also participating in this work.
Assessment of active substances
Active substances in plant protection products are jointly assessed within the EU, and decisions on active substances are made at EU level.
Find out more information
The Swedish Board of Agriculture issues rules on knowledge requirements and permits to use plant protection products in authorisation classes 1 and 2.
The National Food Agency monitors residues of pesticides in crops and drinking water.
The Swedish Environmental Protection Agency issues rules on the distribution and handling of plant protection products in the environment.