Bangkok – As a result of conflict over the use of agricultural chemicals including glyphosate, paraquat, and chlophyriphos, the Ministry of Agriculture and Cooperatives (MOAC) has accelerated research on alternatives to these three types of chemical substances.
Anan Suwannarat, MOAC Permanent Secretary, disclosed this week that the Minister of Agriculture and Cooperatives had instructed the MOAC’s Permanent Secretary, the Director-General of the Department of Agriculture and those concerned to consider legal issues and facts regarding the search for alternatives. The Department of Agriculture is currently accelerating research to find an integrated means to replace the three substances and it is expected to take about two years to reach a clear conclusion. Even if new information says that glufosinate ammonium can replace them, the cost of using the substance is three times higher per rai than the cost of paraquat and glyphosate. It can also not control as many types of weeds as well as paraquat and glyphosate do.
Before having the power to revoke or prohibit the use of all three types of chemicals, in accordance with Section 25 of the Hazardous Substance Act, the Department of Agriculture must collect information from farmers, other users or related authorities to find solid evidence of the danger of using such substances.