Dutch farmers used five million kilos of crop protection products in 2020. That seems like a lot, but compared to 2016 there is a decrease of 11%. At that time, Dutch agriculture used a total of 5.6 million kilos of active substances. It reports that CBS.
Since 2016, the dosage per hectare has decreased by 13.4%. In 2020, 2.2 million kilos of plant protection products were used to combat fungi and bacteria, 20% less than in 2016. 1.2 million kilos were used for weed control and haulm killing, 14% less than in 2016. insects increased by almost 12% to 1.3 million kilos. The other products (against snails, for plant growth regulation and sprout inhibition) decreased by 10% to 0.2 million kilos.
Fewer crop protection products were used in 2020 for two thirds of the 42 agricultural crops examined. Only in seed potato cultivation was a reverse trend visible. Due to the ban on the use of neonicotinoids that crop was sprayed 27% more than in 2016.
The most resource-intensive crop in 2020 was lily bulbs (114 kilograms of resources per hectare). Chrysanthemums and roses, grown under glass, are the numbers 2 and 3 with 52 and 40 kilos of active substance per hectare respectively. Tulips and gerberas are the numbers 4 and 5. Flower cultivation requires the necessary resources.
Seed potatoes require the most crop protection products, followed by apples and pears (between 20 and 35 kilos per hectare). The other crops demanded less than 15 kilograms per hectare in 2020.
Crop protection products either have a chemical basis or they contain microbiologically active substances. There are also products of vegetable origin that are allowed to carry the designation ‘green’, just like paraffin oil-based products. In 2020, 25% of the crop protection products used were ‘green’, according to Statistics Netherlands.
Joris Baecke, portfolio holder Healthy Plants at LTO Nederland, calls the decrease “a great achievement”. But, say Baecke, it will become increasingly difficult to grow healthy crops, because the number of permitted crop protection products is “decreasing rapidly, while effective and affordable alternatives are not available”. The aim of the Ministry of LNV to replace chemical pesticides as much as possible by preventive measures and biological agents by 2030 is what LTO calls a ‘utopia. “Diseases and pests can also occur in a resilient cultivation system, and genetics, nature and technology are not sufficient for the time being to fully protect the crop.”
According to the citizens’ initiative measuring = knowing, all the good news is nonsense and lies a blanket of poison over the Netherlands. Michel Scholte, director of True Price and Impact Institute, took over the news and paid no attention to the figures of the CBL. According to Scholte, the Netherlands sprays 9.2 million kilos.
Speaking on behalf of Natuurmonumenten, SBB, HDL, NMF @JanGorterNM in the States of Drenthe: “Floriculture has exploded in Drenthe. So also the use of #pesticides. We’ve already lost half of our bugs. https://t.co/pUREcf8OCO
— Alok van Loon (@Alokloon) January 13, 2022
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Flowers cost the most pesticides – the Netherlands sprays considerably less, yet the Netherlands would be under ‘blanket of poison’ – Foodlog