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Indian J Occup Environ Med. 2019 Jan-Apr;23(1):32-36. doi: 10.4103/ijoem.IJOEM_121_18.

Knowledge and Perception of Farmers Regarding Pesticide Usage in a Rural Farming Village, Southern India.

Author information

1
Department of Pharmacy Practice, Faculty of Pharmacy, M. S. Ramaiah University of Applied Sciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India.

Abstract

Background:

Farmers are extensively using pesticides for pest control in agriculture. Their precarious handling practices may lead to higher exposure resulting in adverse health effects.

Aim:

Current study was aimed to evaluate the knowledge, attitude and practices regarding pesticide usage and its toxic effects by farmers.

Settings and Design:

Cross sectional.

Study Setting:

Rural village in south Karnataka.

Materials and Methods:

Sample size: 171 farmers, Data collection: face to face standardized validated questionnaire.

Statistical Analysis:

Chi-square test.

Results:

A total of 118 males and 53 females participated in this study with median age of 40 years. About 61% of the farmers knew the harmful effects of pesticides. However, 22% of them were mixing the pesticides using their bare hands and 26% were not wearing any protective clothing during spraying pesticides. Around 67% were carelessly disposing the leftover pesticides in the open fields. Skin problems and neurological system disturbances were the most common pesticide related health symptoms. Equipment washing practices (P < 0.05) and protective clothing (P < 0.03) were significant predictors of health related problems. Significant associations were found between the occurrence of headache and equipment washing practices (P < 0.03), storage of pesticide remains (P < 0.02) and protective clothing (P < 0.01).

Conclusion:

These findings showed that knowledge level is adequate among farmers but this did not reflect in their practice. There is a need for continuous pesticide safety education along with training to the farmers regarding use of personal protective devices, personal hygiene and sanitation practices during and after application of pesticides.

KEYWORDS:

Farmers knowledge; perception; pesticide toxicity; south Karnataka

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