Report a chemical use issue

Chemical standards officers ensure agricultural and veterinary chemicals are used in line with the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Control of Use) Act 1992.

This includes responding to reports from the public regarding inappropriate or potentially illegal chemical supply or use. For example, dealing with allegations of:

  • chemical misuse
  • spray drift
  • unacceptable residues.

Reports are treated seriously and with a high level of respect.

Before making a report to Agriculture Victoria, please read through the following information to ensure that your chemical report falls within the scope of Agriculture Victoria's responsibilities. Other agencies, such as local council and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), are responsible for some chemical use reports as detailed below.

Public health issues

Individuals with public health concerns about agricultural chemicals should contact the environmental health officer at their local municipal council.

Whenever a health concern is raised, it is also essential to discuss the issue with a doctor as soon as possible.

For emergencies, call the Victorian Poisons Information Centre on 13 11 26, 24 hours, 7 days a week.

Occupational health and safety

In the event of workplace occupational health and safety issues, contact your nearest WorkSafe agency on 1800 136 089 (toll free) or (03) 9641 1444.

Environmental issues

Refer to the refer to the Environment Protection Authority for environmental enquiries, including:

  • pollution
  • contaminated land
  • chemical misplacement.

Phone (24 hours): 1300 372 842 (1300 EPA VIC)
Email: contact@epa.vic.gov.au

Environmental odours

Sources of odour

Odours in the environment can be unpleasant and come from a range of sources such as:

  • landfills
  • processing plants
  • waste treatment
  • agricultural production
  • food manufacturing
  • agricultural chemicals.

The ability to detect an odour varies from person to person and some people can be more sensitive than others. Whether someone experiences health effects depends upon several factors including:

  • the source of the odour
  • how long the exposure continues
  • if the person has any particular sensitivities.

How to describe an odour

The Environment Protection Authority have developed an odour list that can help you to describe an odour.

How to describe an odour

Agricultural chemicals and odours

Products containing agricultural chemicals are used to control insect pests, fungal diseases, manage weeds and regulate the growth of crops.

Agricultural chemicals may have an odour when:

  • The product contains one or more odorous ingredients. Ingredients can include the active chemical, solvents, a warning agent, or substances to improve the performance of the product. Any of these could have an odour.
  • Multiple chemical applications may have occurred in the same area.
  • The weather conditions are conducive to odour movement, such as when it is hot or humid, there are low winds or there is an inversion layer (a layer of warm air that traps still air close to the ground).

The presence of an odour does not necessarily mean that chemicals are in the air or that an agricultural chemical product was used in an illegal manner.

What if i have a problem with an odour?

If you or someone else feels ill, seek medical attention as soon as possible.

Environment Protection Authority

The Environment Protection Authority (EPA) sets the standards for air quality in Victoria and responds to reports of odour from industrial sources and large-scale facilities. You can report odour pollution by calling the EPA  24-hour hotline on 1300 372 842.

Local council

Your local council may have rules for community and businesses to follow. If a persistent odour is causing you concerns, contact your local Council to discuss the issue.

Agriculture Victoria

If you suspect your agricultural crop, commodity, livestock or land has been affected from another person’s use of an agricultural chemical or from spray-drift, contact the Agriculture Victoria Customer Contact Centre on 136 186.

Make a report

To make a report to Agriculture Victoria about a chemical use issue, please use the following contact form or contact the Customer Contact Centre on 136 186.

For more information about what Agriculture Victoria will do if you make a report, including what information you may be required to provide, see the following fact sheet:

Contact form

Please use the following form to report chemical issues of this nature.

For general enquiries and questions please contact the Customer Service Centre on 136 186.

Page last updated: 19 May 2021