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Agrochemical or agrichemical, a contraction of agricultural chemical, is a generic term for the various chemical products used in agriculture. In most cases, agrichemical refers to the broad range of pesticides, including insecticides, herbicides, fungicides and nematicides. It may also include synthetic fertilizers, hormones and other chemical growth agents, and concentrated stores of raw animal manure.
Many agrichemicals are toxic, and agrichemicals in bulk storage may pose significant environmental and/or health risks, particularly in the event of accidental spills. In many countries, use of agrichemicals is highly regulated. Government-issued permits for purchase and use of approved agrichemicals may be required. Significant penalties can result from misuse, including improper storage resulting in spillage. On farms, proper storage facilities and labeling, emergency clean-up equipment and procedures, and safety equipment and procedures for handling, application and disposal are often subject to mandatory standards and regulations. Usually, the regulations are carried out through the registration process.
Agrochemicals were introduced to protect crops from pests and enhance crop yields. Due to the adaptation of pests to these chemicals, more and new agrochemicals were being used, causing side effects in the environment. However, agrochemicals are not completely inefficient. According to the article, Agriculture, Pesticides, Food Security and Food Safety, written by Fernando P. Carvalho, chemical fertilizers in the 1960s were responsible for the beginning of the "Green Revolution", where using the same surface of land using intensive irrigation and mineral fertilizers such as nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium has greatly increased food production.
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