Plant protection

The pre-harvest treatment of cereals intended for food consumption with glyphosate is prohibited in Finland. Post-harvest treatments are not performed in Finland during storage to combat pests or diseases, as they are usually nonexistent due to the cold winters.

EU legislation requires that plant protectants are to be used in a balanced and preventive manner. Agri-environmental aid also requires that farmers make plans on how plant protection will be performed. In the use of the products, things to take into consideration include the limitations set by waterways, and avoiding building a resistance to pesticides and herbicides. A farmer using plant protectants must complete training every five years. The equipment used must also be tested.

Farmers have been required to apply the general principles of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) since 2014. This requirement applies to farmers both in Finland and within the whole EU. The measures used in Finland to reduce the environmental and health risks from the use of plant protectants are recorded in the National Action Plan (NAP).

The occurrence of various mycotoxins in the national cereal yield is monitored annually, for example through monitoring executed by the Finnish Cereal Committee. The grain trade and industry operators perform analyses systematically in their self-monitoring schemes. Mycotoxins are toxic metabolites produced by Fusarium species (a genus of fungi). EU legislation has set limit values for the Fusarium toxin deoxynivalenol (DON). Ochratoxin does not appear in Finland.