Cambridgeshire Goat Club October 2018 powerpoint presentation

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“You dirty rat!”

If you use rat poisons then you need to read this!

That famously misquoted line may soon be a phrase more likely to be spoken by many a farmer and smallholder following new rules on the purchase of rodenticides, that come fully into effect from the end of September this year.

The following information is taken from the government’s Health and Safety Executive (HSE) website…

Regulatory environmental risk assessments have concluded that the use of First and Second Generation Anticoagulant Rodenticides outdoors present a higher level of risk to non-target animals (such as predatory birds and mammals) than would normally be considered acceptable. [sic]

Therefore, following an EU directive way back in 2011 the HSE has been required to enact a scheme to reduce the risks from rat poisons when used in the wider environment. All such anticoagulant rodenticides authorisations are undergoing renewal and on the 1st of October only “Stewardship conditions” labelled products will be available to buy and only authorised persons will be able to use them. This in effect means that to purchase and use these poisons that you will have to be in possession of an approved certificate of competence from an approved training programme or be a member of a UK farm assurance scheme “which has among its standards a requirement for an audited programme of rodent pest management.”

If you belong to neither of the above group then you are left with two options 1, employ the services of a professional pest controller who possesses the correct authorisations or 2, purchase and use amateur rodenticide bait but do note that these are likely to be in pack sizes less than 1.5 kilograms and may well be prepared in ready to use blocks or sachets.

It is of natural concern that prices for pest controllers and the purchase of amateur packs is likely to go up. And the ability to buy in bulk will no longer be an option without a certificate.

In the very short term it is still legal to buy and sell all of the existing products until the end of September this year but do note that the legal position is that all existing stocks should be used up or disposed of by the 31st of March 2017. It should be noted that it has only been following the intervention of the NFU and the UK government in delaying the implementation of the scheme that we have had a window of opportunity to allow adequate preparation and the creation of bespoke training courses.

There are various groups that are offering training for the new certificates and in fact the training can be done online for free at the following website (though there are also others)…

More information on the new rules is also available on the above website. Please note that there will still be a requirement to attend a one day course and/or sit an exam and the following websites offer more advice on that line though as these regulations are new more training and new information is becoming available.