Thailand’s Ministry of
Agriculture is attempt-ing to make the industry more environmentally friend-ly by redefining 13 herbs and spices local farmers use as pesticides into a lower toxicity classification.
Thai farmers had used the herbs and spices freely to control weeds and pests up until 2009, when they were reclassified from type 1 to type 2 by the country’s Hazardous Substances Con-trol Bureau.
The 13 herbs involved are neem, tea/tea seed cake, galangal, ginger, turmeric, citronella grass, Siam weed, marigold, chilli, celery, ring-worm bush, flame lily and Stemona collinsiae.
The change in regulations, which effectively brings the use of the herbs as natural insecticides back to what they were pre-2009, means farmers are free to use them on their fields without having to seek permission first.
Thailand is also set to boost agriculture in Israel – by signing an agreement to allow workers to travel to the Middle East country.
The Israeli Minister of Foreign Affairs Gabi Ashkenazi signed the deal with the
Thai Ambassador to Israel Ms Pannabha Chandraramya.
It allows for the recruitment of 25,000 agricultural workers from Thailand.
Mr Ashkenazi said: “This is an important and essential agreement for thousands of farmers in Israel.
“This agreement ensures the existence of the agricultural sector on the one hand and guarantees the rights of Thai agriculture workers on the other.”