The European Commission has published a database of some 1,300 examples of good practices, techniques and technologies for reducing pesticide use. The list was created in accordance with the eight principles of integrated pest management, such as the use of crop rotation and balanced fertilization, monitoring of pest organisms, targeted and limited use of pest control methods. The database also contains 273 “specific guidelines” developed by the national authorities of member states to implement the requirements of integrated pest management. The substantive basis is the Directive on the Sustainable Use of Pesticides. The measures outlined suggest how to achieve the two goals of the “Field to Table” strategy for reducing pesticide use: halving the use of chemicals in fertilizer (by 2030) and moving toward using safer fertilizers as widely as possible.
The practice review was published after two years of work. It shows the great diversity in the implementation of integrated pest management in EU countries. The examples presented in the database are prepared in national languages with a brief introduction in English. The materials prepared are intended to inspire national authorities, agricultural advisors or farmers to develop and implement integrated pest management approaches and adapt existing ones to local and regional agro-climatic conditions.
A survey was conducted during the preparation of the database. It aimed to learn about current integrated pest management practices and their potential to reduce reliance on chemical pesticides, the cost of implementation and their overall effectiveness. One of the main barriers to reducing dependence on pesticides is the insufficient number of cost-effective and affordable alternatives to conventional practices.