Regulatory support for the agrochemical industry

Regulatory support for the agrochemical industry

Supporting the agrochemical industry maintain regulatory compliance

Whether you manufacture agricultural inputs, operate an agrochemical business, or create food and drink products, NCEC can help you maintain your regulatory compliance, operate safely and reduce your impact on the environment.  

The agrochemical sector is exposed to business and operational risks associated with the supply and use of chemicals throughout the supply chain, including cleaning products, fertilisers, biocides and animal feeds. These risks are constantly evolving as our knowledge about the impact of substances on the environment grows.

Those exporting to the EU are witnessing how the ongoing transition to sustainable food systems is presenting a huge economic opportunity for farmers, food processors and the food service industry. Consumers are driving significant change and this is allowing businesses to make sustainability their trademark.

The Farm to Fork strategy is a key part of the European Green Deal and aims to transform how the EU’s food system produces, distributes and consumes food, whilst creating new opportunities for consumers, farmers and the food industry. It prioritises producing good quality, affordable food for everyone while protecting the future of our planet.

The Farm to Fork strategy, along with the Biodiversity Strategy, aims to:

  • Reduce dependency on pesticides and antimicrobials. 
  • Reduce excess fertilisation.
  • Increase organic farming.
  • Improve animal welfare.
  • Reverse biodiversity loss. 

The food contact materials legislation will also be revised with a new emphasis on reducing the of use of hazardous chemicals, and changes to EU tax systems will aim to ensure that the price of different foods reflects their impact on the environment.

The European Commission's legislative proposal for a framework for sustainable food systems for adoption before the end of 2023 will include the certification and labelling of different food products according to their sustainability performance. An EU Code of Conduct for responsible business and marketing practices will also be introduced and this will be accompanied by a monitoring framework.

These various initiatives, driven by the sustainability agenda, will introduce extensions to the existing chemical frameworks and regulations with new concepts and restrictions, and will involve new regulatory burdens on manufacturers, distributors, and supply chain users.

It will be challenging for businesses to keep up with all the legislative developments, but those that do, will have a competitive advantage. 

For further information regarding how we can help you become compliant and maintain access to your key markets, please contact us using the form on the side or email us at [email protected]

NCEC's services

Horizon scanning and compliance reporting

One of the key aims of European regulators is to introduce and extend restrictions on the use of numerous substance groups. The appearance or movement of your chemical substances within global regulatory lists requires you to take action, for example, phasing out a certain substance from your product range or altering its concentration, as well as introducing specific workers' safety procedures. Our Horizon scanning tool can perform a substance inventory check and identify whether your substances appear on any global regulatory lists . It provides the results in a clear, easy-to-read report so that you can quickly determine the most recent status of your substances.

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Access Horizon scanning and compliance report: Sample

Organisations that manufacture or import biocidal products must have a valid biocidal product authorisation before the product is placed on the market. This needs to be done through the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA) for products placed on the EU market, and the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for products placed on the market in Great Britain (GB).

NCEC can assist with all aspects of the approval process, including sourcing and compiling the data required and submitting the information. For active substances and the products containing them, our team of experts can assist you with evaluating the studies used and guide you through the process to gain approval. Our experts have also created a comprehensive Biocidal Product Regulation Compliance Report that explains the practical steps that organisations need to take to meet the requirements for biocidal product authorisation, and active substance approval.

Access Biocidal Product Regulation Compliance Report: Sample
Safety data sheets (SDS)

SDSs play a vital role in communicating hazard information about substances and mixtures throughout the supply chain. If this information is incomplete, important details may not be correctly conveyed, which can lead to potential accidents and an incorrect emergency response, posing risks to both people and the environment. 

Our technical team is equipped with years of regulatory experience and has close links to the regulatory bodies. We can provide SDS authoring that is compliant with globally recommended formats and translate SDSs into the languages you require. For those writing their own SDSs, we can undertake SDS compliance checks to provide reassurance that you are meeting industry standards and provide support and guidance to your internal team. We work closely with our customers to turnaround documentation within their timescales. We also offer a bespoke SDS training course that can be tailored to fit you/your regulatory team’s requirements. 

Our experts can also support businesses with correct labelling of safety and recycling information. This not only maintains compliance but also communicates the vital information about your product to your end user.    

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Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) Regulation is continually being revised. By 2027, we expect to see significant new requirements for lead and joint registrants, which will impact all stages of the global supply chain. REACH Restriction and Authorisation activities can be extremely disruptive to businesses. For example, the proposed restriction on intentionally added microplastics is expected to have a significant impact on the agriculture sector. Understanding and mitigating the impact of these restrictions and complying with them is therefore critical for business continuity.

It is important to keep registration dossiers up to date to minimise the costs and potential disruption of REACH evaluation and enforcement activities. 
NCEC  provides technical guidance on all aspects of compliance with REACH. We can provide tailored registration support to meet your requirements and budget – from substance testing and chemical safety assessments, to dossier creation and submission, including Only Representative (OR) services. 

In addition, NCEC can provide a comprehensive advance warning of applicable Restrictions and Authorisations through our Horizon scanning service, our regulatory team at NCEC is ideally placed to support you throughout these processes.

Our experts can provide regulatory and scientific advice and tailor bespoke solutions to suit your specific needs, including a comprehensive quality review and update service for REACH dossiers.

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Environmental chemistry and toxicology  

Our environmental chemistry and toxicology experts are your trusted partners in chemical hazards and risk assessments. Our specialists combine their deep understanding of chemicals – including their fate and effects in the environment – with regulatory insight to provide our clients with superior outcomes, resilience and value.  
NCEC has considerable experience in placing, monitoring and evaluating regulatory tests. This includes standard and non-standard approaches assessing physicochemical, toxicological and environmental fate endpoints, and carrying out hazard and risk assessments in line with applicable regulations. We specialise in working with challenging and complex substances, and assessing the biodegradability, persistence and ecotoxicity of substances. We have the knowledge and experience to help you navigate the highly complex and evolving chemical assessment requirements.

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Dangerous goods safety advisor service (DGSA)

The majority of companies involved in the carriage of dangerous goods by road – including the packing, loading and unloading of dangerous goods – are legally required to appoint at least one certified DGSA.

It can be challenging to train and maintain an in-house DGSA because they must pass a series of examinations before they can carry out their duties and they must also keep up to date with the latest changes to regulations. 

Whether you need a DGSA or you are a DGSA, NCEC can support you with all the regulatory requirements for transporting dangerous goods. Our team of DGSAs can guide you through the complex transport legislation and help you meet your regulatory obligations.  

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Poison centre notifications

With legislative requirements varying significantly across EU member states, and further divergence within the UK adding more complications to the process, the submission of data to poison centres can be a complex process. 

NCEC offers a full poison centre notification service and can tailor advice so that your portfolio is compliant across the EU and compliant with additional mandatory national requirements. We identify the specific data requirements for each Member State, relevant to your product range, and liaise with the appropriate appointed receiving body to notify this information. Our service is driven by years of experience of researching each Member State’s implementation of poison centre legislation and shaping poison centre policy through our work with the European Commission. 

Poison centres in Member States answer over half a million calls for support per year, however, they tend to redirect any non-medical calls to the manufacturer. If a poison centre redirects the call to you, you will have to consider if you have the capabilities to provide a 24-hour emergency response for your products. NCEC provides a Level 1 telephone emergency service which is available 24/7, 365 days of the year, through a network of international telephone numbers and local language speakers, so that it looks and feels like a local service. 

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24/7 emergency response service

Any agricultural chemical incident could have a rapid and direct impact on the environment and on those using the product. It is therefore vital for agricultural businesses to have a robust emergency plan for incidents, and be able to demonstrate that they have the resources available to react quickly and effectively.

Unnecessary downtime caused by confusion over how to respond appropriately to an incident, or an overestimation of the potential hazards can exacerbate emergency situations and leave a business open to prolonged risk and disruption. Our service provides proportionate and timely advice through a 24/7 helpline, which deals with incidents quickly and appropriately and minimises downtime to business operations and risks to business performance. 

Our service is available 24/7, 365 days of the year through a network of international telephone numbers and local language speakers, so it looks and feels like a local service. Our team will consider your organisation’s needs, as well as any global regulations, and build a service to meet your specific requirements, rather than a one-size-fits-all approach. We mitigate the impacts to people, the environment, assets and reputation, and provide a consistently high quality of response and transparency across global organisations. 

NCEC is the first choice for leading chemical businesses across the world for telephone emergency response. We provide callers who are at the scene of an incident with tailored and actionable advice underpinned by liability insurance, giving confidence in the advice that we offer.

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Ricardo's agriculture services

Ricardo's agriculture services

Ricardo can help you understand the challenges facing agriculture and implement sustainable solutions that deliver effective results. Our advice in areas such as nutrient management and catchment-based-approaches, and our direct training support will help mitigate risks and deliver real sustainable benefits. Find out more. Read more