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How to prepare for an HSE PPP Compliance Inspection

News - 30.04.24

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is completing an extensive series of farm visits (these commenced in November 2023) with a focus on ensuring compliance with the Official Controls (Plant Protection Products) Regulations 2020 (OCR).

Farms will be required to prove that they are compliant and that workers handling PPPs are properly trained and protected. Emphasis will be placed on farms engaged in crop and arable farming, encompassing land holdings of 150 acres or more. Particular attention will be directed towards farms not presently registered under the OCR Regulations and those not inspected by HSE within the past five years.

Key Areas for the Pesticide Enforcement Officer (PEO)

The PEO will focus on critical aspects associated with PPPs such as:

  • PPP Storage Arrangements
  • Mixing, Filling and Disposal
  • Spillage Protocols
  • PPP Selection
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)
  • Local Environmental Risk Assessment for Pesticides (LERAP)
  • Training & Certification
  • Safe Usage
  • Machinery Calibration and Maintenance
  • Record Keeping
  • Management of Contractors


We have created a self-assessment checklist to help you identify any areas of improvement.

This checklist is meant as a guide only and is not exhaustive.

Refer to the Code of Practice for Using PPPs for further information and to ensure compliance: Code of Practice for Using Plant Protection Products (hse.gov.uk)

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Plant Protection Product Compliance Checklist

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What to Anticipate from a Visit

While most visits will be pre-scheduled, some may occur unannounced. The anticipated duration of these visits is approximately 2-3 hours.

In cases of OCR Regulation non-compliance, HSE inspectors will generally provide guidance, which may be delivered verbally or in writing.

In some instances, enforcement notices may be issued, either an improvement notice specifying a defined timeframe for corrective measures, or a notice prohibiting an activity.

In serious cases the HSE can prosecute you for breach of legislation.

Further Information

More information on what the visits will entail can be found on the HSE website: Pesticide enforcement officer visits - HSE

Refer to the Code of Practice for Using PPPs for further information and to ensure compliance: Code of Practice for Using Plant Protection Products (hse.gov.uk)

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