Toxic Trail Part Two (2001)

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    United Kingdom

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The second of two programmes on the use of pesticides. Examines what the multinational chemical companies are doing about the misuse of their products - so-called `product stewardship', and considers the `quiet revolution' that is offering farmers in developing countries a pesticide-free, organic future. In Thailand, Bangkok's ex-governor, Dr Bhichit Ratrakulm, was so concerned about the rising level of pesticide use by Thai farmers that he used market forces to encourage local farmers to cut down. The rejection of produce with high pesticide levels by Bangkok's Si Moom Wong market encouraged local farmers to adopt more ecologically-friendly methods of food production. In Chainat district, farmers have started their own insectory which breeds natural predators to control pests. The Thai farmers are part of a wider movement which began in Indonesia, known as Integrated Pest Management (IPM). Under IPM, farmers learn about management, agroecology, soil properties and how to control insects naturally in `farmer field schools', and pesticide usage in Indonesia has dropped dramatically. Now Cambodian farmers - championed by IPM - are being offered an organic alternative to their reliance on dangerous pesticides.

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