Information watchdog slams pesticides agency

The government’s information commissioner has upheld a complaint against the Veterinary Medicines Directorate over its failure to release environmental information on sheep dip pesticides. The directorate said to do so would breach the manufacturer’s intellectual property rights.

The Information Commissioner has condemned the Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD), an executive agency of the environment department (DEFRA), for illegally withholding information on the impacts of cypermethrin-based sheep dips.1

The decision follows a complaint made four years ago by Fish Legal, then known as the Anglers Conservation Association, that the directorate failed to deal with an information request within legal time limits and then illegally withheld information on environmental risk assessments of the products.

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