Q. Is paraquat used unsafely in many developing countries?
A. The key to the safe use of all crop protection products (CPPs), including paraquat, is education and training. Paraquat has been manufactured and widely used since the 1960s. Farmers, helped by groups such as government extension services, manufacturers, suppliers, distributors, and others, have made great progress in the safe and effective use of CPPs. As a result, farmers have become more competent in safeguarding themselves, consumers and the environment. Labels are the first source of information for farmers on how to use and apply products in a way that is effective against the target pest yet doesn't pose unnecessary risks for people or for the environment. However, in developing countries, low levels of literacy mean many farmers can't read labels. To help them, pictograms have been developed to show farmers how to prepare and use products safely. These are now used in developing countries to support the text label. For more information, visit the Stewardship section of this website.