Food for thought: CropLife Canada incorporates the latest, reliable research to debunk "junk" science and provide factual information on pesticides.
It is time for our industry to stand up and be proactive with those who wish to question us based on misinformation and untruths. Informing the public about the true benefits our industry delivers to Canadians each and every day is a top priority for CropLife Canada.
CropLife Canada is the trade association representing the manufacturers, developers, and distributors of plant science innovations--pest control products and plant biotechnology--for use in agriculture, urban, and public health settings. CropLife members provide essential pest management tools for both agricultural and urban environments; tools that are best regulated using evidence-based risk assessments. We support a system that incorporates the latest, best available science and studies from experts in Canada and abroad, studies that have withstood the scrutiny of peer review. We support a regulatory system that is adequately funded and resourced and that uses a precautionary approach to decision making.
Standard stuff. But all the science in the world may never convince the skeptics. Facts alone are never enough; as the old saying goes, people don't care how much you know until they know how much you care.
That's why CropLife has embarked on the Food for Thought communications initiative. In a recent survey, we questioned the chief household decision-makers on food and nutritional matters and found that 73 percent have been left confused about the safety of foods grown using pesticides, as a result of information they have heard from various sources. Eighty-five percent said they want more factual and evidence-based information about pesticides, food, and human health.
The Food for Thought initiative contains a number of elements: advertisements that will run throughout this year in a number of family-focused magazines including Chatelaine, Canadian Living, Reader's Digest, Today's Parent and Canadian Family. There will also be a series of media announcements related to the science behind crop protection, and an informative and interactive Web component (www.croplife.ca/foodforthought).
Of course, words are not enough. We have to say what we do, do what we say, and be able to prove it. New advances in pesticide formulations and state-of-the-art application techniques are resulting in much more targeted and effective products, while at the same time further minimizing environmental impacts. Already, two-thirds of CropLife Canada's spending is devoted to stewardshipfirst initiatives. And we support Integrated Pest Management (IPM) strategies that use a variety of techniques and all effective tools--including pest control products and plant biotechnology to maximize pest control benefits.
As an industry, we want to be clear as to what we stand for--safety and innovation. We believe in safety--protecting human health and the environment. And we believe in innovation through continuous research.
By informing Canadians directly, we aim to build confidence in our products and the system that regulates them. Through the efforts of industry and government, we want to continue earning and enhancing the public's trust in our industry, serving Canadians from coast to coast.
In the words of John Seely, "A grain of knowledge, of genuine controllable conviction, will outweigh a bushel of adroitness."
Lorne Hepworth is president of CropLife Canada.
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|Title Annotation:||GUEST COLUMN / CHRONIQUEUR INVITE|
|Comment:||Food for thought: CropLife Canada incorporates the latest, reliable research to debunk "junk" science and provide factual information on pesticides.(GUEST COLUMN / CHRONIQUEUR INVITE)|
|Publication:||Canadian Chemical News|
|Date:||Apr 1, 2005|
|Next Article:||Chemistry inclusive.|
|Prudent pest control.|
|CLA'S current activities.|