April 15, 2013 – Etobicoke, ON – Manitoba farmers returned almost 75,000 kilograms of obsolete pesticides and 340 kilograms of food animal medications for safe disposal last year in a first-of-its kind joint collection program.
, a national industry-led agricultural waste stewardship organization, has run an obsolete pesticide collection program twice before in the province but last year it partnered with the Canadian Animal Health Institute (CAHI) to include food animal medications for the first time.
“It’s always a good thing when we can offer expanded programs to help farmers responsibly manage waste on their farms. Partnering with the Canadian Animal Health Institute was a big success and we hope to build on this in the future,” says Barry Friesen, general manager of Cleanfarms.
Farmers were invited to participate in the program, at no charge, by dropping off their obsolete or unwanted agricultural pesticides and food animal medications over a three day-period at 20 collection sites throughout the province in October.
“Members of the Canadian Animal Health Institute were pleased to partner with Cleanfarms in their recent collection of obsolete pesticides, which was expanded to include expired and un-used food animal medications. This pilot demonstrated that a simple, one- stop collection point for both pesticides and animal medications is a valuable service that we can offer to farmers,” said Jean Szkotnicki, President CAHI.
Funding for this program was also provided by the Manitoba Conservation Sustainable Development Innovation Fund (SDIF) and the Manitoba Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives Agricultural Sustainability Initiative (ASI) Fund.
Since 1998, Manitoba farmers have returned almost 220,000 kilograms of obsolete pesticides. After collection, the pesticides are taken to a licensed waste management facility where they are safely disposed through high-temperature incineration.
“We support this important program, and we promote it extensively,” said Doug Chorney, president of Keystone Agricultural Producers, one of the program partners. “The overwhelming uptake by Manitoba farmers is an indication of their commitment to sustainable farming practices.”
The obsolete pesticide collection program generally comes to the province every three years. In between collections, farmers are encouraged to safely store their unwanted pesticides until they can properly dispose of them through the obsolete pesticide collection program.
The Cleanfarms obsolete pesticide collection program is part of the plant science industry’s commitment to responsible lifecycle management of its products.