The Advisory Committee on Pesticides provides independent advice to Ministers on matters relating to the regulation and use of pesticides, including applications for approval of new products and reviews of existing approvals. It usually meets in closed session (because of intellectual property and commercial secrecy considerations) approximately eight times a year in York.
Chairman: Professor D Coggon
Members: Professor A Boobis, Dr P McElhatton, Dr D N Bateman, Mr J Orson, Mrs E Brown, Mrs S Owen, Professor P Calow, Professor R Smith, Dr I Grieve, Dr V K Tohani, Professor G Matthews
Apologies were received from the following Members: Professor G Edwards Jones, Dr C Elcombe, Mr C Stopes
Representatives from the following Departments and other organisations were present: The Pesticides Safety Directorate (PSD), Department of Health (DH), Health & Safety Executive (HSE), Food Standards Agency (FSA), Environment Agency (EA), English Nature (EN), Rothamsted Research (IACR), The Food and Environment Research Agency(FERA), Agriculture and Environment Biotechnology Commission (AEBC), US Environment Protection Agency (US EPA)
At its meeting on 17 October 2002, the Committee discussed the following issues:
1. Agenda Item 1:
1.1 a) 294th Meeting: Minutes [ACP 1 (295/2002)]
1.1.1 Agreed as amended
1.2 b) 294th Meeting: Detailed Record of Discussion [ACP 2 (295/2002)]
1.2.1 Agreed as amended
2. Agenda Item 2: Secretary’s Report [ACP 3 (295/2002)]
2.1 The Secretary to the Committee reported on the recommendations made at the meeting held on 5 September 2002.
3. Agenda Item 3: Matters Arising
3.1 a) Dichlorophen [ACP 8 (295/2002)]
3.1.1 Non-agricultural products containing dichlorophen were revoked in 2001 due to the non-submission of data. The Committee considered an application from an approval holder to reinstate its dichlorophen products, pending evaluation of outstanding data.
3.1.2 After obtaining confirmation and clarification from HSE on several points, the Committee agreed that the approval holder could place the product back on the market.
3.2 b) Partial Review of Bendiocarb – Further Information [ACP 9 (295/2002)]
3.2.1 At the July 2002 meeting, the Committee had considered a review of the physical chemistry, mammalian toxicity and efficacy of bendiocarb. They had asked HSE to consult with FSA on the methods by which cholinesterase inhibition had been measured, and to provide further information to members on the carcinogenicity studies that had been carried out.
3.2.2 FSA reported that they were content with the HSE evaluation of data on cholinesterase effects, and members agreed that no further repeat dose studies should be required to address this aspect of the risk assessment.
3.2.3 HSE had now provided further information on survival rates in the carcinogenicity studies. The Committee agreed that the data provided were sufficient, and that no further studies relating to carcinogenicity need be required at this stage.
3.2.4 Discussion at the July meeting had also focused on concerns about bendiocarb toxicity to cats and members had asked for further data to be provided.
3.2.5 Members discussed new information that had been obtained about this and concluded that further relevant studies identified by the approval holder should be evaluated by HSE. To ensure a consistent approach, members also asked HSE to review the labelling of other insecticides used in similar circumstances.
3.2.6 Data on secondary exposure were still awaited, and HSE advised members that this would most likely be available in the first quarter of 2003.
3.3 c) ACP Response to FSA Policy Document [ACP 11 (295/2002)]
3.3.1 FSA welcomed the Committee’s intention to submit comments, and explained that their policy document was evolving.
3.3.2 Members discussed draft comments that had been prepared by the Chairman, and the difficulties of meeting public expectations on pesticide residues.
3.3.3 The Chairman undertook to redraft the ACP comments for further discussion at the next meeting.
3.4 d) Detailed Record of July for Disclosure [ACP 12 (295/2002)]
3.4.1 Members were informed that Ministers' agreement was being sought for publication of the full record of discussion.
3.5 e) A Proposed Sub-Committee on Alternative Approaches to Pest Control [ACP 19 (295/2002)]
3.5.1 Following discussion at the July 2002 meeting of the ACP, the Chairman had written to Ministers as agreed, suggesting the establishment of an ad hoc subcommittee of the ACP to consider alternative approaches to pest control. .
3.5.2 Ministers had now asked for a small, clearly focused subcommittee to be formed. The Committee considered the membership of the new subcommittee and discussed proposed meeting and working arrangements.
3.6 Human Health Review of Ethephon [ACP 21 (295/2002)]
3.6.1 At the July 2002 meeting the Committee had considered a human health review of ethephon (2-chloroethyl phosphoric acid) as part of the UK anticholinesterase review programme. In response to the Committee’s conclusion that ethephon should be labelled as an anticholinesterase compound, the approval holder had submitted a further position paper for consideration.
3.6.2 Members discussed the paper, and concluded that it did not provide a basis on which to change the decision reached at the July meeting.
3.7 Other matters arising from the minutes
3.7.1 Members were updated on progress with various other actions identified at the previous meeting.
3.7.2 The Committee agreed that the transcript of the 2002 Open Meeting produced from a recording was not a complete and accurate representation. They asked that an amended version be sent to members for approval, and that in the meantime the current, unsatisfactory version be removed from the ACP website.
3.7.3 Item to follow.
4. Agenda Item 4: IDS Report of Meeting on 24th September 2002 [ACP 4 (295/2002)]
4.1 The Secretary reported on issues discussed at the meeting of the Inter-Departmental Secretariat on 24 September 2002.
5 Agenda Item 5 : Environmental Panel - Report of the Meeting on 25th September 2002 [ACP 17 (295/2002)]
5.1 The Chairman of the Environmental Panel reported on the issues discussed at its meeting on 25 September 2002.
6. Agenda item 6: Nicobifen [ACP 5 (295/2002)]
6.1 This paper considered the first application for provisional authorisation in the UK of a product containing the new active substance nicobifen. The product is formulated as a water dispersible granule containing 50% w/w nicobifen and was proposed for use on oilseed rape to control various fungal pathogens. Nicobifen is also being considered for inclusion in Annex I of Council Directive 91/414/EEC and the rapporteur member state is Germany.
6.2 Members agreed that overall they were content that provisional approval could be granted subject to final confirmation from one member that there was no need for an acute reference dose for this compound. (Post meeting note: final confirmation was received following the meeting.) They identified several questions for discussion in the European consideration.
6.3 Post meeting note: The ISO common name of the active substance has now been changed from nicobifen to boscalid.
7 Agenda Item 7: Dimoxystrobin [ACP13 (295/2002)]
7.1 Dimoxystrobin is a new systemic strobilurin fungicide in the EU, with the UK acting as Rapporteur Member State for inclusion in Annex I of EU Directive 91/414/EEC. In the UK provisional approval had been sought for agricultural use of dimoxystrobin (with epoxiconazole) on winter wheat.
7.2 Members discussed the application and asked for further data and clarification on various mammalian toxicology issues. At this stage, they were unable to recommend provisional approval.
8. Agenda Item 8: Discussion Paper on a Contingency Strategy for use of Pesticides in Combating West Nile Fever [ACP 7 (295/2002)]
8.1 The Department of Health sought advice from the ACP on the use of pesticides as part of a contingency strategy for combating West Nile Fever. They presented a paper, together with supporting documents.
8.2 Members identified a need for further information on the epidemiology of virus transmission and the efficacy of the proposed strategy of pesticide treatments. They stressed that this should include an analysis of the likely impact of pesticide use on rates of human infection.
8.3 Members noted that a risk assessment should be carried out for any proposed extensions to existing approvals for pesticide products. They also raised questions about the training of operators and the supply of pesticides likely to be used.
8.4 The DH and HSE agreed to address the points raised. Given the need to agree a strategy in an appropriate timeframe, the Chairman asked that these be dealt with between meetings by direct contact with members.
9. Agenda Item 9: Leukaemia Report [ACP 18 (295/2002)]
9.1 The Department of Health asked that the Committee be made aware of a report on "Critical Windows of Exposure to Household Pesticides and Risk of Childhood".
9.2 The Chairman noted that this was a fairly standard epidemiological study, which did not seem to indicate an immediate need for any regulatory action.
10. Agenda Item 10: First UK Approval of Ferric Phosphate [ACP 6 (295/2002)]
10.1 This position paper detailed an application for first UK approval of a product containing ferric phosphate. This compound was included in Annex I of Council Directive 91/414/EEC in November 2001. The product was proposed for use as a slug killer in the home garden.
10.2 Members agreed to advise Ministers that standard approval be issued for the product ‘Growing Success Ferramol Slug Killer’, containing 10g/kg ferric phosphate, for use in the home garden.
11. Agenda item 11: Agriculture and Environment Biotechnology Commission – work plan [ACP 15 (295/2002)]
12. Agenda Item 12: Agriculture and Environment Biotechnology Commission Consultation about GM crops: post-commercialisation scenarios [ACP 20 (295/2002)]
12.1 The two AEBC papers were presented to the meeting by a representative of the AEBC.
12.2 The Committee agreed that there should be further liaison between the two bodies in relation to the work of the new ACP subcommittee on alternative approaches to pesticide control. This would be relevant to the AEBC’s proposed new work topic of examining the ‘environmental footprints’ of different types of agriculture, on which the AEBC hoped to begin work in spring 2003. Members agreed that individual responses to the AEBC’S consultation about liability issues would be more appropriate than a Committee response.
13. Agenda Item 13: Draft Pesticide Usage Survey Report 183 – Outdoor Bulbs and Flowers in Great Britain 2001 [ACP 10 (295/2002)]
13.1 The Committee monitors the use of pesticides following approval, in a cyclical manner across all crops. A draft report from the Pesticide Usage Survey Team at the The Food and Environment Research Agencyhad been received, presenting information regarding usage on outdoor bulb and flower crops grown in Great Britain during 2001.
13.2 Members discussed the report and agreed to its publication.
14. Agenda item 14: Draft Pesticide Usage Survey Report 181 – Soft Fruit Crops in Great Britain 2001 [ACP 14 (295/2002)]
14.1 A second draft report from the Pesticide Usage Survey Team at the The Food and Environment Research Agencyhad been received, presenting information on pesticide usage on soft fruit crops grown in Great Britain during 2001.
14.2 Members discussed the report and agreed to its publication.
15. The next meeting of the ACP will take place on Thursday 28 November 2002, in Foss House, York.
16. Agenda Item 16: Any Other Business:
16.1 a) 2,4-D Toxicity In Mice - Paper by Cavieres, Jaeger and Porter (2002) – Env Hlth Persp 110 (11) pp 1081 – 1085 [ACP 24 (295/2002)]
16.1.1 This scientific report was tabled at the meeting. PSD had concluded that there was no immediate concern requiring regulatory action.
16.1.2 It was agreed that the paper should be examined by a member with relevant expertise, who would then liaise further with toxicologists in PSD.
16.2 b) ACP and Panel Membership
16.2.1 The Chairman and members discussed proposals for changes on the Committee and its sub panels that would be necessary as a result of the forthcoming departure of some members.
Professor David Coggon