Chemical Pesticides and Human Health: The Urgent Need for a New Concept in Agriculture

By Polyxeni Nicolopoulou-Stamati1*, Sotirios Maipas1, Chrysanthi Kotampasi1,
Panagiotis Stamatis1 and Luc Hens2
1 Department of Pathology, School of Medicine, National and Kapodistrian University of Athens, Athens, Greece, 2 Vlaamse
Instelling voor Technologisch Onderzoek (VITO), Mol, Belgium

doi: 10.3389/fpubh.2016.00148

Published in 2016 in frontiers in public health

The industrialization of the agricultural sector has increased the chemical burden on
natural ecosystems. Pesticides are agrochemicals used in agricultural lands, public
health programs, and urban green areas in order to protect plants and humans from various
diseases. However, due to their known ability to cause a large number of negative
health and environmental effects, their side effects can be an important environmental
health risk factor. The urgent need for a more sustainable and ecological approach has
produced many innovative ideas, among them agriculture reforms and food production
implementing sustainable practice evolving to food sovereignty. It is more obvious than
ever that the society needs the implementation of a new agricultural concept regarding
food production, which is safer for man and the environment, and to this end, steps such
as the declaration of Nyéléni have been taken.