The government is not placing sufficient priority on the safe and sustainable use of pesticides, according to a report by the influential House of Commons Environment, Food & Rural Affairs Committee.
Its report on the first four years of the Voluntary Initiative (VI) on pesticides said some of the targets were insufficiently challenging.
It also claimed that there was currently little irrefutable evidence of the environmental benefits that have resulted from the initiative, which is designed to encourage responsible and efficient use of pesticides.
The committee was adamant the only justifiable reason for a pesticides tax would be to raise funds for pesticide reduction. If not, then the adverse financial impacts on farmers would make a tax unjust.
Neil Kift, NFU pesticide adviser, said: “The report does not recognise the complexity of the topic. The detail of any recommendations must be carefully considered as there are no simple solutions.”