The process for farmers, gamekeepers, pest controllers and their employees to buy professional rodenticide packs for use outdoors changes on Saturday this week, October 1, completing a long-running industry campaign to ensure users are properly equipped with the necessary certificate of competence or documents confirming membership of an approved farm assurance scheme.
Without documentation, from Saturday onwards, all sellers including those buying online are prohibited from completing the sale under the conditions of the UK Rodenticide Stewardship Regime.
The changes, designed to reduce the occurrence of residues in wildlife, have been managed by the Campaign for Responsible Rodenticide Use (CRRU) with full involvement in training activities for farmers being given by the Agricultural and Horticultural Development Board (AHDB).
“For many years it was thought best practice to set out bait points on farms, shooting estates and around rural premises, then keep them permanently topped up with rodenticide,” said CRRU UK chairman, Dr Alan Buckle. “We now believe this practice is responsible, at least in part, for the contamination of wildlife that we now see so widely in the UK.
“Of course, there is no risk if rodenticides are not used. So it must be a high priority in all outdoor rural locations to make them as inhospitable as possible to rodents. This is done by reducing harbourage and preventing access to foodstuffs. It is simply not acceptable to provide ‘bed and board’ for rodents and solve the problem by repeatedly poisoning them with rodenticides.”