A quantitative analysis of Colombian campesinos’ use of pesticides: perceived control and confidence in this use

Ysabel Polanco, Juan C. Salazar, Barbara Curbow

Resumen


Objective: this study aims to explore how campesino non pesticide users differ in their knowledge, attitudes and beliefs, and perceptions of control and confidence surrounding pesticide use compared to pesticide users. Methodology: we collected 79 questionnaires with adult (male and female) rural agricultural campesinos in San Cristobal, Antioquia, Colombia. We examined the campesinos’ perceptions on pesticides’ harm for human health and the environment, as well as their beliefs, attitudes, perceived control, and perceived confidence related to pesticide use. Results: The findings differed between two campesino groups sampled: pesticide users and agroecological adherents. Pesticide users showed lower perceptions of pesticide harm for human health and the environment, lower perceived control about stopping pesticide use (an increase of one unit in control decreases the logit of using pesticides by 74%), and lower confidence about stopping pesticide use than agroecological adherents (an increase of one unit in confidence decreases the logit of using pesticides by 64%). Discussion: Several individual factors influence the occupational safety and health of campesinos, including perceived control and confidence. We recommend that future public health and educational interventions should improve safety training and confidence so campesinos can gain control of the process for implementing behavioral change related to pesticide use reduction.


Palabras clave


pesticides, campesinos, risk perception, perceived control.

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