New certifications by 2020: agriculture head

Taipei Times
Date: May 08, 2017
Translated by: Jake Chung and William Hetherington

Liberty Times (LT): How does the council view the series of food security incidents including the avian flu outbreak, pesticide abuse and excessive dioxin in eggs? How does it plan to improve the situation?

Lin Tsung-hsien (林聰賢): There are rumors that the council is about to relax regulations on more than 100 kinds of pesticides; this is a severe misunderstanding.

Council of Agriculture Minister Lin Tsung-hsien gestures during an interview with the Liberty Times (sister newspaper of the Taipei Times) on April 28. Photo: Peter Lo, Taipei Times

The pesticides are not additional ones, but rather an expanded list of allowed pesticides.

The nation’s limited agricultural space has caused different kinds of crops to be planted in close proximity to each other. In such circumstances, pesticides originally intended for rice might be carried over to nearby vegetable patches or fruit orchards. While the pesticides will not necessarily be harmful to humans, it would prevent farmers from being able to sell their products, leading to losses.

To address this issue, former council minister Chen Bao-ji (陳保基) issued a directive to look into amendments that would allow for residues of legal pesticides on other agricultural products.    [FULL  INTERVIEW]

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