National Department of Agriculture
Crop Protection and Animal Health Association

Pesticides: storing agrochemicals and stock remedies

Prevent the risk of agrochemicals and stock remedies being used to poison livestock, people and even to destroy crops. Losses are costly and can be avoided by efficient security.


Keep agrochemicals locked away from children and untrained
workers or those that cannot read.

Lock away chemicals safely in a separate store so that cross-contamination of food, feed, seed and fertiliser by spillage or vapours from volatile chemicals will not occur.

In the case of fire or floods these materials will be confined to one area.

Product separation

Separate herbicides from other agrochemicals.
"Very toxic/Toxic" products should be grouped together.
Flammable products should be interspersed with non-flammable products of their own group.

Use products on the basis of `first-in-first-out'

Stacking of products

Cement floors tend to sweat. Therefore, to prevent damage to cartons or paperbags, they should:
be placed on pallets
not be stacked against exterior walls.

Quality assurance

Chemicals stored under dry, cool conditions will not deteriorate as rapidly as those exposed to extreme temperatures and moisture.

A well-organised store will prevent the wrong remedy being chosen accidentally.

Where to place the store

Unacceptable places to store agrochemicals are:
other rooms which are used frequently.

5 m


The store should be at least 5 metres from other buildings.

It must not be near:
a dwelling house
buildings for livestock
rivers, dams, boreholes and areas likely to be flooded
buildings where the following are stored:
- feeds
- fodder
- fuel
- other flammable materials.



Use smooth screeded concrete.

Floor to wall joints must be made watertight.

Earth, timber, bitumen, PVC or linoleum and coarse unscreeded concrete are not acceptable.


Walls should be made of brick or concrete blocks.

Place airbricks or vents 200 mm from the floor and/or at roof level.

Good ventilation is important. In areas where severe sandstorms occur, wind direction should be considered when placing vents.


The roof must not leak.

It should be fitted with some form of insulation to maintain temperature at a reasonable level.

Vents in the roof will allow hot air to escape during summer.


Steel doors with an effective locking system is recommended.


Windows should allow enough light into the store so that the product labels can be read easily.

Windows should be at/or above head height and burglar barred.


The store should contain:

a table
measuring jugs
a scale.

Never use household items in the store!

Clean the equipment at the end of each working day to avoid possible contamination of products. A wash trough is recommended for this purpose.

In case of spills, have on hand a:
- broom
- spade
- supply of dry fine sand.

Provide large open-ended containers (1/3 of a 200 l drum) for disposal of
contaminated material and into which leaking containers can be placed.

Protective equipment must be available. These include:
- overalls
- rubber gloves
- face shields
- goggles
- boots.

Protective clothing should be washed in a wash basin
and not together with household clothing.

For further information contact AVCASA,
tel (011) 805
 2000/70/79/85 fax (011) 805 2222



Compiled by Directorate Communication, National Department of Agriculture
Printed and published by National Department of Agriculture
and obtainable from
Resource Centre, Directorate Communication, Private Bag X144, Pretoria 0001, South Africa