Keeping records of herbicide distribution
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Ground or aerial distribution contractors are responsible under the Agricultural Chemicals Distribution Control Act 1966 for ensuring that records of each and every ground distribution carried out on their behalf are made and kept for at least 2 years. These must be made available to authorised officers on request.
It is recognised that, for practical purposes, the operator of the ground equipment will more than likely make these records. However, the distribution contractor is responsible for ensuring that these records are made and kept for the required period.
Benefits of keeping records of herbicide ground distribution
Records are an excellent management tool and provide an information source that can be used to:
- identify chemical use patterns
- analyse the effectiveness of chemicals
- assist in the design and implementation of integrated pest management programs
- assess chemical resistance strategies
- conduct financial planning and budgeting exercises
- meet legal obligations
- demonstrate due care and attention.
Types of records to keep of herbicide ground distribution
The Agricultural Chemicals Distribution Control Act outlines the types of records you need to make and keep for ground distribution, including:
- the name of the licensed operator carrying out or supervising the ground distribution
- the name and address of the person for whom the ground distribution is being carried out, including postal and physical address of the property
- particulars to identify the chemical as well as the distinguishing number (registration number assigned to the product by the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority), if the chemical has a number. Particulars to identify the chemical could include the full registered trade name of the product as found on the label, the name of the manufacturer of the chemical or the name and amount of the active constituent of the chemical (this must be recorded for each herbicide used)
- the diluent used (i.e. water or oil), details of any wetter, spreader, emulsifier or other material added to the spray mixture (i.e. the full registered name on the label of the product used)
- details identifying the exact location of the land treated, including distance and directions from the nearest town site (e.g. the Real Property Description Number found on the rates notice for the property, together with a farm map detailing paddock names or numbers). Use of global positioning system (GPS) devices may also be helpful in determining and recording the exact location of the land treated.
- the date or dates and start and finish times of the ground distribution carried out
- details of weather conditions, such as the wind direction and velocity (strength), at the commencement time and place of the ground distribution
- details of any change in wind velocity or direction occurring once the ground distribution commences and up until it concludes, including recording the time when the change occurred
- the quantity, concentration (rate per hectare) and total volume of herbicide mixture applied
- the total area covered
- a description of the type of crop treated or a situation in which the chemical was used (e.g. roadsides, fallow)
- the purpose for which the herbicide was applied (e.g. control of wild oats).
An additional optional record not required under Section 26 of the Act but useful to make and keep is the detail of the temperature and humidity at the time and place of the distribution.
All records made under Section 26 of the Act must be kept for at least 2 years and must be made available to the standards officer of Biosecurity Queensland or an inspector appointed under the Act upon request.
- Read more about keeping records of aerial distribution of agricultural chemicals.