Chinese Legislation Could Reduce Glyphosate Supply

BEIJING – China’s endemic oversupply of glyphosate could be stemmed by new legislation. The Ministry of Environmental Protection’s proposed Effluent Standard of Water-based Pollutants from Organo-phosphorus Pesticide Industry has been redrafted in cooperation with the China Crop Protection Industry Association and the Shenyang Research Institute of the Chemical Industry to set acceptable levels of water-based pollutants.

There is only one general standard for guiding the wastewater treatment in all the industries in China, Integrated Wastewater Discharge Standard, but it is general and doesn’t consider the speciality of the organo-phosphorus pesticides. Thus, it doesn’t play an expected important role in managing the glyphosate industry, according to CCPIA. Now that representatives from industry have helped revise the rule to make it feasible for glyphosate makers, China’s Environmental Protection Agency is set to evaluate the new criteria and pass it into law.

The CCPIA’s environment protection review group does not have the power to pass or fail facilities that manufacture glyphosate, but they will take the Effluent Standard as a legal basis to support their scrutiny. If they find companies that do not have waste water treatment equipment for the manufacturing of glyphosate, they will report them to the Ministry of Environmental Protection, and the ministry will take action against the unqualified manufactures.

The move is the latest regulatory attempt to consolidate the Chinese glyphosate manufacturing industry, which long has been ridiculed for allowing low-margin producers to create a glut of supply in the global market, thereby commoditizing an important crop production technology and driving prices to all-time lows.

Facility upgrades under the quest for better environmental protection and public health has been an effective way for China’s National Government to consolidate other industries, and glyphosate’s new scrutiny has been planned for many years. The current revision to Effluent Standard of Water-based Pollutants from Organo-phosphorus Pesticide Industry, if passed, could very well be the mechanism by which rampant oversupply from China finally subsides.

Leah Lee from CCPIA contributed to this report.

news source: Farm Chemicals International

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