New brochure on pesticide drift is available from Practical Farmers of Iowa

For Release: July 3, 2014

AMES, Iowa — A new brochure that offers guidance on pesticide drift, how to prevent it and what to do if drift affects farmers or rural residents is now available for free in print and online from Practical Farmers of Iowa.

The brochure – “Protect Your Right to Farm: Pesticide Drift Response Guide for Iowa’s Farmers and Rural Residents” – explains what pesticide drift is; how to recognize when drift has occurred; proactive steps farmers and others can take to prevent drift; and detailed instructions on what to do in the aftermath of a drift episode. The guide also has a quick-reference list of important contacts and a form that can be used to record important details about the event. The brochure was produced in partnership with Pesticide Action Network.

To request a print copy of the brochure, contact Liz Kolbe at [email protected] or (515) 232-5661, or download a copy at http://practicalfarmers.org/member-priorities/horticulture.

“I think most people have no idea what they should do if they witness or are victims of the misapplication of chemicals,” says Rob Faux, of Genuine Faux Farm near Tripoli, who has experienced pesticide drift on his organic vegetable and poultry farm. “This brochure provides an action list and appropriate contacts for resources that will make the first steps less bewildering and more productive.”

Pesticide drift is defined as the physical movement of a pesticide through the air at the time of application or soon thereafter, to any site other than that intended for application. When this happens, it can cause crop, property and environmental damage, as well as potential health problems if people are inadvertently sprayed or unknowingly consume affected livestock or produce.

The new brochure is an effort to address the uncertainty and lack of information many Iowa farmers and residents have about what drift is, how to prevent it and what to do if drift does occur. The brochure includes the following sections:

  • What pesticide drift is
  • How you can tell if you have experienced drift
  • What to do if you or your property are exposed to pesticides
  • Advice from farmers on ways to proactively prevent drift
  • A list of important contacts
  • An unofficial pesticide drift reporting form to log details
  • The role played by the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship (IDALS) Pesticide Bureau
  • What might happen after an IDALS Pesticide Bureau investigation

“As an Iowan, I was raised to understand that part of being a good citizen was to take care of the things you need to do without infringing on the rights of others in the process,” Rob says. “There are practical approaches and solutions that we, as Iowans, can embrace that will effectively address the problems of chemical drift and misapplication. But first, we have to admit there is a problem and that part of the process is learning how to report misapplication issues so we can get a sense of the extent of the problem and possible causes.”

###

Founded in 1985, Practical Farmers of Iowa is an open, supportive and diverse organization of farmers and friends of farmers seeks to strengthen farms and communities through farmer-led investigation and information sharing. Farmers in our network produce corn, soybeans, beef cattle, hay, fruits and vegetables, and more. For additional information, call (515) 232-5661 or visit www.practicalfarmers.org.

Contact:

Liz Kolbe | Practical Farmers of Iowa | (515) 232-5661 | [email protected]

Tamsyn Jones | Practical Farmers of Iowa | (515) 232-5661 | [email protected]