Join the
pesticide-CheckUp!

until the 30th of June 2022

Why we need to be active now!

Pesticides are a serious threat to our food and farming systems. On the field, they kill pollinators like bees and reduce the quality of soils. They endanger the health of farmers and field workers. And their toxic impact doesn´t stop at the farm gate: through the food we eat, they find their way into our bodies and our close environments. This concerns us.

We are not alone: 1.2 million European citizens signed the European citizens initiative “Save Bees and Farmers”.  Together we call for a drastic reduction of pesticides.
While citizens, farmers and scientists and many more demand the end of pesticides, EU decision-makers hesitate to make a change. Meanwhile, the pesticide industry lobby tries hard to prevent any further regulation.

In May 2020, the EU released the Farm to Fork strategy – a declaration of intent that could play a significant role in transforming our food systems. One of the strategy´s target includes the reduction of pesticide use in the EU by 50% until 2030. However, this target is not legally binding and challenged by national governments and the agrochemical lobby. Currently, the EU revises their pesticide regulations – but these face the danger to be far less ambitious than EU citizens wish!

Now is the time to demonstrate our demands to EU decision-makers: we want their binding commitment to the pesticide reduction target and ambitious and legally binding regulations. Together we raise our voices for healthier food and farming systems that protect our biodiversity!

Join the Pesticide-CheckUp

Participate now in our cross-European Pesticide-CheckUp and get your hair tested for pesticides. Together we call for better protection for the health of farmers, consumers and our nature!

What is the action?

We invite you to participate in a Europe wide citizens-science action. You can engage with the topic of pesticides by getting your own hair tested for pesticide residues. An independent laboratory will conduct the analysis for 30 different pesticide residues. During the Good Food Good Farming Action days in October, we raise our voices for better pesticide policies in many decentral events across Europe and also organize a joint-action in Brussels.

How to join?

1. Order the test-kit here. There are two options:
– If you pay for your own test and the analysis, the costs are 150€ (covers test-kit and analysis). You will then also recieve the individualized results of your own hair.
– You can also order a subsidized test financed by GFGF for 15€ (only covers test-kit). The laboratory then decides whether to test your hair based on the data collected and depending on our available funds.

2. Snip, snap, cut off the hair! Ask a friend or family member to help you.

3. Return the envelope with your hair by mail to our laboratory (shipping already included in the fees).

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

  • There are two options: 

    1. you pay 150 euros for your own test-kit and analysis at the laboratory. You will receive a test-kit, send in your strand of hair and receive your individual test result later.
    2. you only pay 15 euros for a subsidised test (covers material costs only, not analysis). You receive a test-kit and send in your strand of hair. GFGF pays for the analysis of your hair  depending on our crowdfunding capacities.
  • The lab tests for 30 pesticides that are permitted and commonly used in the EU and can be easily detected in our hair. 

    These are the names of the 30 pesticide active substances: 

    Acetamepride, 2,4-dichlorophenoxyacetic acid, Aclonifen, Ametoctradine, Boscalid, Chlortoluron, Clomazone, Cyprodinil, Dicamba, Diflufenicanil, Dimethomorph, Ethofumesate, Fluazinam, Fluopicolide, Fluopyram, Fluroxypyr, Lenacil, MCPA, Metamitrone, (S-)Metolachlor, Pendimethaline, Phenmedipham, Propyzamide, Prosulfocarb, Pyraclostrobin, Pirimiphos-methyl, Spiroxamine, Tebuconazole, Terbutylazine, Trifloxystrobin

  • The Pesticide Check-Up runs until the end of June. After that, the samples are analysed by the laboratory and the results are published. From late summer on we will start a second campaign phase and mobilise for a pesticide-free world in decentral events across the EU (and a joint-event in Brussels).

  • We have already raised money for the analysis of approximately 300 hair samples. Any test that is to be analysed beyond depends on the financial means available through crowdfunding.

  • In the test kit there are detailed instructions with a unit of measurement for the hair. You will need to cut off two strands of hair for the test to be effective. Check out our Instruction video.

  • The tests are analysed by the laboratory Yootest. The laboratory has many years of experience with tests that detect environmental pollution (not only) in hair. It is located in Strasbourg, France.

  • When you order a test kit, you have to answer a few questions about yourself and where you live or what you eat. This information helps to interprete the results of the testing. The personal data you provide will be used exclusively for the purpose of the report statistics. All data will be anonymised. Your personal data will be processed in accordance with the EU General Data Protection Regulation.

  • No. It is not our aim to do a representative, scientific study. We want to selectively prove how many pesticides are in our hair and engage citizens in the topic. In this way we create awareness for the issue and call on the EU to tackle the phasing out of pesticides.

  • Citizens from 10 EU countries are currently taking part: Belgium, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Spain, Germany, Finland, Italy, Latvia, the Netherlands and Poland  – and the number is growing.

  • The laboratory will publish a summary of the test results (report) on their webpage. The report will also be available on our webpage.  We may use the results from the laboratory in our communication to raise awareness about pesticide exposure across Europe.

Want to do more?

Convince your friends, family, collegues and followers on social media to take part in the action.

We have different material available for you: sharepics, content documents and testimonials incl. different stakeholders. Materials are available in BG, CZ, DE, EN, FR, FI, IT, LV, NL and PL.

Timeline

  • May – June: Pesticide-CheckUp
  • May 20: World Bee Day
  • May 22: International Day for Biological Diversity
  • June 6: World Environment Day
  • June 22: Release of EU Commission: Proposal for revision of EU pesticide regulations
  • July-Dec.: Czech Presidency of EU Council
  • Augst 29 – September 9: UN Biodiversity Conference (COP 15) (tentative)
  • October 1-31: European Action Days Good Food Good Farming
  • October 16: World Food Day
  • During October: Farm to Fork conference
  • November 7 – 18: UN Climate Change Conference (COP 27)
  • December 3: Day of no pesticide use
  • December 31: Expiry of glyphosate permit

National focal points

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