Farmer's behavior in pesticide use: insights study from smallholder and intensive agricultural farms in Bangladesh

Md. Panna Ali, Mir Md. Moniruzzaman Kabir, Sheikh Shamiul Haque, Xinghu Qin, Sultana Nasrin, Douglas Landis, Björn Holmquist, Nur Ahmed

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51 Citations (Scopus)
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Since independence and over the years, pesticides have become a dominant feature of Bangladesh agriculture. To protect farmers' health, environment and to improve sustainability of chemical pest control quantitative understanding of farmers' behavior in pesticide use is critical. However, study on the levels of knowledge and awareness of farmers and the practices of pesticide use are often limited. We conducted a broad analysis on the effects of knowledge and awareness of farmers as well as the influence of the different associated stakeholders such as pesticide retailers and the government, on farmers' behavior in pesticide use from a detailed survey of 917 agricultural households in different regions of Bangladesh. Within eight protective behaviors (PBs) or PPEs were largely influenced by the crops growers and regions. Never discarding empty pesticide containers in the field, never applying pesticides more than prescribed by DAE or the instruction manual, selecting new types of pesticides recommended by DAE and purchasing low toxicity pesticides were the most adopted practices. Most farmers from the South-East region were adopting the PB of wearing mask, gloves and long sleeved clothes when spraying and farmers from South trusted the recommendations of pesticides by village leaders and neighbors. Majority of vegetables growers were well informed that pesticides were very harmful to the quality of agricultural products, the environment, and human health but not rice or mixed crops growers. Generally, PBs were positively affected by the perception of the consequences of farmers' behavior and knowledge of pesticide use but negatively influenced by action of governments and trust of retailers. It is important to recognize the differences that exist among different crops growers and locations. Attempt needs to bridge the gap among crop growers, locations and different stakeholder such as government agencies and retailers to develop policy.
Original languageEnglish
Article number141160
JournalScience of the Total Environment
Early online date25 Jul 2020
Publication statusPublished - 10 Dec 2020


  • Perception
  • Trust
  • Retailers
  • Crop types
  • Regional-differences


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