Compulsory certification of all professional users
According to the Finnish Plant Protection Products Act (1563/2011), all professional users must be certified (plant protection certification) to use plant protection products. Undergoing training in handling and using plant protection products, related to the certification, is voluntary. More information on earlier training and certification systems for plant protection is available here.
The content of the training programme is laid down in a Decree of the Finnish Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry (6/2012). Knowledge of the matters specified in the Decree is tested as part of plant protection certification.
Professional users must acquire certification by 26 November 2015 (transitional provisions). Farmers subscribed to environmental commitments must acquire certification during the 2015 growing season, in compliance with the terms of their commitments. Certification must be renewed every five years. Certification is required of all individuals who use plant protection products professionally in agriculture, horticulture and forestry, including the following:
- Farmers, contractors providing plant protection services, farm workers
- Market gardeners, horticultural workers
- Green space workers, golf course caretakers
- Railway and road maintenance workers
- Annosum root rot control workers
- Buyers and sellers of plant protection products intended for professional use (at least one seller/company)
Acquiring certification is recommended for those who make spraying decisions, since they should have sufficient knowledge of pests, possible control thresholds and authorised products. Training and certification must also be provided to advisors. Where possible, training and certification are tailored to specific target groups.
The role of Tukes is to ensure that training and certification are available for professional users of plant protection products. Tukes also authorises training and certification providers upon application. Authorisation has already been granted to more than 100 training and certification providers (contact details, pdf). Tukes continues to welcome applications for authorisation. (See how to apply).