New PFI Video Series Discusses Pesticide Drift
For several years, Practical Farmers has worked to elevate understanding and communication about pesticide drift issues. Recently, we have gathered our pesticide drift materials to a new webpage and a few new resources: a document called “Pesticide Drift and the Law,” which provides background information for farmers and their lawyers; and a video series featuring farmers Rob Faux and Andy Dunham, discussing their experiences with pesticide application near their farms and the potential (and realized) impact on their farm businesses.
Each 3-5 minute video captures a different element of why drift is a problem and how it can be prevented. Fruit and vegetable operations are sensitive to pesticide drift and are high-value crops – this means that drift on a small area can have a big financial impact on an operation. Many fruit and vegetable farms are also organic, meaning drift could cause them to lose organic certification for three years, significantly impacting the revenue they can generate from their crops.
The farms also have employees in the field daily, as growing fruits and vegetables is labor intensive. The health of those workers is at risk when pesticides drift, and they have to head inside when spraying happens nearby. “They are in danger potentially, if somebody is applying chemicals and not watching where they’re going,” Rob says. “We’d like people to be paying attention just as much as we are.”