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Counterfeit pesticides: a mixed methods study of a transnational organised crime threat to the UK agricultural industry

Sambrook, C.I. (2016) Counterfeit pesticides: a mixed methods study of a transnational organised crime threat to the UK agricultural industry. Doctoral thesis, Harper Adams University.

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Abstract

The proliferation of counterfeit plant protection products (pesticides) has been widely reported in agricultural trade journals and in the popular press. A review of these publications showed that there is a common narrative, and one which draws heavily on industry derived data. A recent UK Intellectual Property Office (IPO) review of the calibre of contemporary counterfeiting research cast doubt upon the veracity of such data sources. The aim of the study was to ascertain the nature of this crime as it occurs in the UK and to determine the threat it poses to the agricultural industry. This was achieved by mixed-methods research, a strategy endorsed by the IPO as a means of more accurately capturing the characteristics of a counterfeiting problem when compared to a single strand study. The results of the research suggested that the industry derived narrative is a reasonable reflection of the UK counterfeit pesticide problem, at least in so far that it recognises the mechanics of the crime. However, the data also revealed that there are characteristics of this illicit trade that have not been previously described. It was apparent that whilst the modus operandi is widely appreciated it is underpinned by a market dynamic that is far less well understood. This dynamic is the product of the confluence of a poorly policed amenity market for pesticides, an industry response that is unduly focused on legislative change, and a rural police force that is largely concerned with reducing theft from farms. It was the conclusion of the thesis that a means of reducing the counterfeit pesticide threat is to be found in disrupting its underlying dynamic. Recommendations are made to achieve this, including making better use of industry derived intelligence and raising awareness of the problem amongst farmer users of pesticides and enforcement agency staff.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Divisions: Land, Farm and Agribusiness Management
Depositing User: Ms Kath Osborn
Date Deposited: 02 Aug 2018 13:55
Last Modified: 31 Aug 2018 14:34
URI: http://hau.collections.crest.ac.uk/id/eprint/17300

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