Tuesday, 04 November 2014 10:24

Agchemical operators need to have certification

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RURAL CONTRACTORS New Zealand (RCNZ) says it endorses recent warnings by Waikato Regional Council (WRC) that agrichemical contractors operating without certification are breaching regulations.

 Chief executive Roger Parton says RCNZ shares the concerns of WRC and other regional councils about unqualified and/or unregistered chemical applicators not been properly trained or qualified to spray agrichemicals.

“RCNZ has a chemical applicator accreditation programme to meet the needs of our members and the industry.”

Parton says the application of agrichemicals has to be done in a competent and professional manner to ensure the enhancement of the crop and the safety of the operator, the environment and the public.

There are two levels of agrichemical applicator accreditation available through Rural Contractors New Zealand: basic chemical applicator and registered chemical applicator.

“Rural Contractors New Zealand has a strict policy in regards to any person applying agrichemicals in a public place or on private property for hire and reward,” Parton says. 

“He or she has either got to be the holder of a registered chemical applicator accreditation or have a basic chemical applicator (or equivalent) accreditation and be operating under the immediate and direct supervision of the holder of a registered chemical applicator accreditation.”

Parton says all agrichemical contractors accredited through RCNZ carry wallet cards to prove their accreditation.

RCNZ supports rules requiring that neighbours be notified before any spraying takes place. “However, spraying can only take place when weather conditions are
suitable and sometimes this does not permit the notification timeframes required in the rules,” he says.

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