Reforms to regulation of agricultural chemicals and veterinary medicines

Reforms to regulation of agricultural chemicals and veterinary medicines

The Australian Government is implementing reforms to the regulation of agricultural chemicals and veterinary medicines (agvet chemicals) for the benefit of the community, manufacturers, importers, wholesalers, retailers and users of agvet chemicals.

These reforms aim to reduce red tape for farmers and other businesses and encourage the development of new chemistry with a range of benefits for farmers and other users, the environment and the community.

Reforms enacted and yet to commence

Reforms introduced in the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals Legislation Amendment Act 2013 commence on 1 July 2014.

These reforms:

  • improve the efficiency and effectiveness of assessment processes for applications and for reconsiderations (reviews) of agvet chemical approvals and registrations
  • enhance the consistency and transparency of assessments and reconsiderations by publishing principles and processes for regulatory action and by implementing these principles and processes to better align regulatory effort with chemical risk
  • improve the ability of the regulator to enforce compliance with its regulatory decisions by providing it with a graduated range of enforcement powers; and
  • encourage industry to provide data to support ongoing registration of agvet chemicals and to support permit applications.

The Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) is the Australian Government regulator responsible for registration, quality assurance and compliance of agvet chemicals up to and including the point of retail sale.

The APVMA is responsible for implementation of these changes to agvet chemicals legislation.

Further information about implementation of these reforms can be found on the APVMA’s website.

Reforms before the parliament

The government has committed to easing the burden imposed on the Australian economy and agricultural sector by reducing red and green tape on business by at least $1 billion per year.

Part of the red tape reduction is to remove the requirement for agvet chemicals to be periodically re-approved and re-registered.

The Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals Legislation (Removing Re-approval and Re-registration) Amendment Bill will give effect to this commitment and make further improvements to reduce red tape. The Bill was introduced into the House of Representatives on the 19 March 2014. Information about the Bill is available at the Parliament of Australia website.

The Bill propose to:

  • remove the requirement for agvet chemical re-approval and re-registration
  • introduce further simple reforms to agvet chemical regulation to reduce red tape and improve efficiency, like providing for less frequent registration renewal
  • improve the APVMA’s ability to secure information about the safety of chemicals supplied in the market to improve health and safety and compliance
  • streamline access to information about approvals and registration in the APVMA’s files
  • address some minor implementation issues identified in existing reform legislation.

A consultation paper about the Bill was released to the public (between December 2013 and March 2014) and industry stakeholders.

A brief addendum was also published.

The Bill will principally amend the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals Code Act 1994. A compilation of this Act, as it will be, just before the Bill has effect, is available:

Submissions received on the Bill:

Received from Date received PDF icon PDF Word icon Word
Mr Hans van den Broek 19/12/2013 204 KB 23.5 KB
Mr John Gray 19/12/2013 122 KB 22 KB
Mr Ken Brown 31/12/2013 123 KB 23 KB
Graeme Smith Consulting 20/01/2014 383 KB 28 KB
Stock Feed Manufacturers’ Council of Australia 31/01/2014 110 KB N/A
South Coast and Tablelands Livestock Health Committee 03/02/2014 121 KB 22 KB
Department of Agriculture and Food, Western Australia 03/02/2014 199 KB 22 KB
Hon Gail Gago MLC 13/02/2014 44 KB N/A
Dr Ross Henderson 24/02/2014 191 KB 33 KB
Australian Veterinarians in Industry 25/02/2014 165 KB 49 KB
Growcom 26/02/2014 176 KB 1.3 MB
Australian Pork Limited 27/02/2014 1.5 MB N/A
Goat Industry Council of Australia 28/02/2014 820 KB 66 KB
Victorian Water Industry Association Inc. Catchment Task Group 03/03/2014 187 KB N/A
Australian Veterinary Association 04/03/2014 220 KB N/A
Deeway Laboratories P/L 04/03/2014 1.4 MB N/A
Croplife 06/03/2014 445 KB N/A
Allfarm Animal Health 06/03/2014 131 KB N/A
National Aquaculture Council 06/03/2014 13 KB N/A
Australian Council of Trade Unions 06/03/2014 322 KB N/A
Tasmanian Farmers and Graziers Association 07/03/2014 534 KB N/A
AgForce 07/03/2014 521 KB N/A
Accord 07/03/2014 897 KB N/A
Feed Ingredients and Additives Association of Australia 07/03/2014 581 KB 66 KB
Pet Food Industry Association of Australia 07/03/2014 395 KB 163 KB
Plastics and Chemicals Industries Association 07/03/2014 145 KB N/A
Apple and Pear Australia Limited 07/03/2014 327 KB N/A
Goat Veterinary Consultancies 07/03/2014 950 KB 60 KB
Chestnuts Australia Inc / Hazelnut Growers of Australia Inc / Pistachio Growers’ Association Inc. 07/03/2014 266 KB N/A
Choice 07/03/2014 576 KB N/A
Grain Producers Australia 07/03/2014 1.5 MB 1.0 MB
Horticulture farming enterprises 07/03/2014 4.5 MB N/A
International Animal Health Products 07/03/2014 1.4 MB N/A
National Farmers’ Federation 07/03/2014 448 KB N/A
Australian Dairy Farmers Limited / Dairy Australia 07/03/2014 103 KB 75 KB
Competitive Advantage 07/03/2014 220 KB N/A
Australian Forest Products Association 07/03/2014 101 KB N/A
Australian Network of Environmental Defender’s Offices Inc. 07/03/2014 235 KB N/A
World Wildlife Fund / National Toxics Network 07/03/2014 1.4 MB 155 KB
Gene Ethics 07/03/2014 242 KB N/A
Community and Public Sector Union 08/03/2014 590 KB N/A
NSW Farmers Federation 11/03/2014 252 KB N/A