Updates from the Northern Zone
On the 21st and 22nd of November 2023, Kerona Scientific hosted its fourth annual Plant Protection Products (PPPs) Symposium, providing a unique opportunity to hear from and interact with industry and regulatory experts about recent developments for PPPs across Europe. Among the speakers at the symposium was Jana Johansen-Hladilova from the Norwegian Food Safety Authority. Her presentation provided some updates from the Northern Zone (NZ) and their approach to dealing with PPP submissions.
Expert groups in the NZ, including the zonal Steering Committee (zSC) and coordinators, engage in regular teleconferences to address ongoing evaluations and technical matters among member states. In addition to that, face-to-face meetings are held biannually to focus on improving the guidance document on work-sharing in the NZ and establish common approaches in assessing PPPs within the NZ. The last biannual face-to-face meeting took place in Oslo this year and covered topics like the use of drones and robots in precision spraying, with Norway and Sweden being the only countries approving minor uses for robots. Uncertainties around the use of drones and robots persist concerning efficacy, spray drift, residues, and associated risk assessments. In addition to that, drones remain prohibited in the EU.
Several topics were requested to be discussed at the meeting, including advice for handling submissions in the zone, addressing regulatory blocks and delays, Art 34 procedures, and updates on harmonisation efforts. Delays in Member States evaluations often stem from factors like new staff, staff relocations, incomplete applications, and prioritisation principles.
Efforts are being made to harmonize approaches within the Art 43 process, but there are still some challenges that cause delays in Art 43 procedures due to Category 4 exemption requests and harmonising approaches for active substances (a.s.) not undergoing Art 43 renewal in regards to new a.s. data and guidance, methodology and modelling for risk assessments. The guidance document on work-sharing in the NZ for the authorisation of PPPs can be found here.
If you missed the PPP Symposium, a copy of all the presentations is available on the publications section of the Kerona website at https://kerona.ie/product-category/publications/
If you need support with the authorisation or support of plant protection products across Europe, please do not hesitate to contact Kerona at firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at +353 (0)1 849 5284.