Approach in Belgium
The shortage of authorisations for plant protection products in minor crops is handled in 4 working groups in Belgium:
- Fruit growing
- Indoor vegetable growing
- Outdoor vegetable growing
Within each group, there are growers' representatives, research institutions, auction houses and the government. Each of these groups has a meeting at least once per year. During the meetings, all crops are discussed and the problems and possible solutions are listed. At the end of each meeting, a priority list is drawn up. This priority list is used to apply for extensions of existing authorisations.
Extensions can be given on the basis of:
- mutual recognition
- studies which are available with the authorisation holder
- exchange of data with other countries
- after generating new data or a combination of all of the above
For all the listed problems, it is ascertained whether a solution can be found through one of the possibilities mentioned above, starting with the first priority.
It is of course also possible to request third party extensions for crops which are not discussed during the working groups, such as hops, tobacco and spelt. To this end, those who wish to submit the application can contact the government who will support them in word and deed.
To help third parties, certain studies may be funded by the budget fund for raw materials and products.
Actions are also taken at the EU level to optimise the use of plant protection products in minor crops.