To conduct experiments or trials with plant protection products for research or development purposes, with a non-authorised plant protection product being released into the environment or which involves a non-authorised use of a plant protection product, a permit for trial purposes is needed.

A permit for trial purposes is restricted to maximum area per trial – specified per crop (defined by the Ctgb). The permit may impose further conditions to prevent harmful effects on human and animal health or unacceptable adverse effect on the environment.

There are two types of permits for trial purposes, i.e. application for a permit to use a plant protection product for trial purposes where the treated crops

  • enter the food chain
  • do not enter the food chain

For experiments or trials where a genetically modified organism is introduced into the environment, no permit for experimental purposes is granted, unless such an introduction was accepted pursuant to Directive 2001/18/EC.

An alternative for individual trail permits for experiments with non-authorised plant protection products, is TNG-recognition (art.54(4)) of the company that performs the research. TNG recognition is restricted to companies with a recognition of Good Experimental Practice (GEP). TNG recognised organisations are exempted from trial permits, provided that trials are executed under the terms of TNG safety measures. If TNG safety measures do not apply, individual trial permits still can be requested. The recognition is monitored by the NVWA, Plant Division combined with inspection of the GEP recognition.

The legal basis

Article 54 Regulation No. 1107/2009/EC.

Application type criteria

  • It must constitutes a trial. By completing and signing the application form the applicant declares that this is a trial.
  • It must constitutes a plant protection product (definition see below)
  • The trail must be carried out in the Netherlands.
  • The trial must be carried out on a small area/quantity, see table below.
  • The trial must be carried out in a small period, see table below.
  • It is not allowed to bring genetically modified organisms in the environment, unless such an introduction was accepted pursuant to Directive 2001/18/EC.
  • The trials must be conducted in accordance with the appropriate guidelines, to the extent guidelines are available.
  • If a permit is granted more than twice for trial purposes for the same crop/product combination and for the same purpose, the applicant must indicate how the requested trial differs from the previous trial or why a repetition or continuation of the trial is necessary.
  • The trial cannot begin before the date on the decision and until the Ctgb has been informed about the trial locations. The start point of the trail is the point in time when the product is actually used. The applicant is allow to start the trial when he did receive the approval of the Ctgb and when the Ctgb is informed about the trial location.

Maximal areas to be treated per trial

For a specification of the crop groups listed below, refer to the DTG list [Definition list of crops for plant production products] formerly the SOT-list). On the application form, do not list crop types or groups, but specific crops!

Mandatory notification of time of harvest

The holder of the trails with food, drink or stimulants or with parts of dedicaded crops, must before the tial start (before the moment that the product is actually used) inform the inspector Divisie Landbouw & Natuur : Use in this case the form Mandatory notification of time of harvest (see below).

Outsourcing tests

When trials are outsourced to research institutions, research centers, other firms or persons, then this institutions, firms or persons always need a copy of the permit from the holder of the permit.

Rop group

Maximum area per trial,
per crop

Unprotected cultivation

Maximum area per trial,
per crop

Protected cultivation

Arable crops 5 ha -
Cultivated grassland 5 ha -
Fruit crops, Large fruits and Nuts  2 ha 0.5 ha
Fruit crops, Small fruits and Other fruits  1 ha 0.5 ha
Vegetable crops  1 ha 0.5 ha
Herb crops  1 ha 0.5 ha
Edible fungi - 1000 m2
Ornamental crops 1 ha 0.5 ha
Public landscaping 2 ha -

Maximal quantities to be treated per trial

Crop group

Maximum quantity per trial,
per crop

ware potatoes and starch potatoes 225 tonnes
seed potatoes  2500 kg
daffodil bulbs 25 tonnes
hyacinth bulbs 13 tonnes
tulip bulbs 10 tonnes
lily bulbs 10 tonnes
iris bulbs/rhizomes 7 tonnes
gladiolus bulbs 4 tonnes
other flower bulbs 10 tonnes
crocus bulbs  7.5 tonnes
apples  20 tonnes
pears  20 tonnes

Duration period product trial permit

The trial starts when at the point in time when the product is actually used. The duration of a trial permit is no more than 2 years. If you want to conduct trials after this period has elapsed, then a new application must be submitted.