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New Chair for Voluntary Initiative in Scotland

Fife farmer David Bell to take over from Andrew Moir on group that encourages responsible use of plant protection products

Fife grower David Bell is to take over the chairmanship of a valuable industry-led initiative in Scotland that promotes the responsible use of plant protection products through IPM (Integrated Pest Management).

David Bell, from Fairfield Farms, Colinsburgh, is the current Vice-Chair of NFU Scotland’s Combinable Crops committee and AHDB Cereals and Oilseeds Board member.  



He will lead on the Voluntary Initiative (VI) in Scotland, representing Scottish interests at the UK Voluntary Initiative – a body which encourages the responsible use of plant protection products (PPPs) and ensures that every farmer and grower places IPM at the heart of decision making on farm, including the responsible use of PPPs.

The Scottish VI works to reduce the risks of PPP pollution and mitigate diffuse pollution risks, works with landowners to protect and increase habitats for pollinators including bees and farmland birds, and continues to promote best practice and the responsible use of PPPs through different accreditation schemes, training, and practical tools to protect the wider environment.

Working alongside the UK VI, key successes have included the establishment of a National Register of Sprayer Operators (NRoSO) and the National Sprayer Testing Scheme.

Mr Bell takes over the chair of the Scottish VI from Andrew Moir, Thornton Mains, Laurencekirk, who has held the chair since March 2015.

Commenting on his appointment, David Bell said: “The VI has increased farmer awareness of the good stewardship needed when working with plant protection products.

“This has not only helped the environment but also demonstrated why growers can and must be trusted with an effective range of such products and tools to ensure high quality food can be grown efficiently in the face of growing pressures from disease, pests and a diminishing toolbox of plant protect products.

“Through the work of the VI in Scotland, farmers are provided with a pragmatic, informative and supportive way of responsibility using plant protection products. The Scottish VI will continue to work collaboratively across the industry to recognise different interests and support robust PPP stewardship.

“Considerable credit must be given to Andrew Moir who has chaired the Scottish VI since March 2015 and has demonstrated to regulators and politicians the significant strides the industry has made, and continues to adopt, towards safe and pragmatic PPP use. The success made in delivering initiatives and collaboration across the industry by Andrew is something I look forward to continuing.”  

Ends

Contact Bob Carruth on 0131 472 4006

Author: Bob Carruth

Date Published:

News Article No.: 147/20


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