CropLife Canada represents the manufacturers, developers, and distributors of plant science innovations – pest control products and plant biotechnology – for use in agriculture, urban, and public health settings. CropLife Canada supports innovative and sustainable agriculture in Canada, in cooperation with others, by building trust and appreciation for plant science innovations.
Although the world population has doubled in the last 40 years, the area of land devoted to food production has remained virtually constant; crop protection products have enabled farmers to produce higher yields of their crops on less land. In fact, U.S. farmers provide 18% of the world’s food supply on only 10% of the world’s farmland.
Silent Spring - A Landmark Anniversary in Crop Protection Safety
1962 marked the publication of a groundbreaking book in the United States, Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring. Often credited with spurring the modern environmental movement, this book provided an insightful look at the development and use of crop protection products in U.S. agriculture, and the potential impact of certain modern agricultural tools. CropLife America (CLA) recognizes that Silent Spring was an important book for the crop protection industry, consumer well-being and environmental safety. Regulatory agencies, industry and environmental groups have worked together since Silent Spring in developing a number of changes, including:
- The eventual foundation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the regulatory body for the crop protection industry;
- A rigorous registration and re-registration process for each crop protection product, including more than 120 safety, environmental and health tests to determine possible effects on consumers, wildlife and the environment;
- Advancements in the training of applicators, and the development of precision applications;
- The continued investment in Integrated Pest Management, a multi-faceted form of pest control that helps to reduce energy use and potential environmental impact, while maintaining quality output.
To learn more about the benefits of crop protection products and their regulation, visit www.croplifeamerica.org/crop-protection/benefits.
A Year of Recognition
Throughout 2012, CLA will recognize the important questions raised on the 50th anniversary of Silent Spring, such as:
- What more can the crop protection industry do to protect farmers and consumers?
- How can industry and regulatory agencies collaborate further to streamline regulatory processes?
- How can the industry become better stewards of the environment?
- What are the improvements in product safety and responsible agricultural practices during the last 50 years?
Please check back in the coming months as CLA adds videos and other resources that discuss modern agriculture’s role in the wake of Silent Spring.