From 2002, the development of WHO specifications has followed a new procedure, described in the Manual for development and use of FAO and WHO specifications for pesticides. This new procedure follows a formal and transparent evaluation process. It describes the minimum data package, the procedure and evaluation applied by WHO and the experts of the "FAO/WHO Joint Meeting on Pesticide Specifications" (JMPS).
WHO specifications for technical material, developed under the new procedure, do not necessarily apply to nominally similar products of other manufacturer(s), nor to those where the active ingredient is produced by other routes of manufacture. WHO is able to extend the scope of the specifications to similar products, but only when JMPS is satisfied that the additional products are equivalent to those which formed the basis of the reference specification.
Equivalence means the determination of the similarity of the impurity and toxicological profile, as well as the physical and chemical properties, presented by supposedly similar technical material originating from different manufacturers, in order to assess whether they present similar levels of risk.
WHO specifications for formulations developed under the new procedure, unless otherwise stated, encompass the products of all formulators legitimately able to certify that their products contain only active ingredient sourced from a manufacturer to whom the WHO specification for TC/TK applies. Buyers and/or regulatory authorities should demand such certification and ensure both that it is valid and that the products fully comply with the physical and chemical requirements of the WHO specifications.
Pre-shipment analysis of pesticide consignments will ensure that the product offered meets the relevant specifications before shipment, thereby avoiding subsequent problems if the product delivered is of poor quality. Quality control on arrival or after shipment may be required if the traceability of the product cannot be guaranteed, if the product appears to have been tampered with or if it is known to have been exposed to unacceptable shipping and storage conditions.
- WHO specifications for pesticides used in public health — following the new procedure
- WHO specifications for pesticides used in public health — based on the old procedure
- WHO analytical methods
- Proposed programme for development of WHO specifications
- FAO/WHO Joint Meetings on Pesticide Specifications (JMPS)
- Guidelines for purchase of public health pesticides [pdf 333kb]
- Proposer's data entry form: pdf file for reference [pdf 143kb] and Word file for downloading [word 231kb]