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  1. Financial Losses to Counterfeit Pesticides $5.8 Billion

Counterfeit Pesticides

News and statistics about counterfeit pesticides.

In the first 7 months of 2013, police in China conducted over 19,000 anti-counterfeiting cases throughout the country. The Ministry of Public Security reported that the counterfeit products seized and destroyed by the Chinese security service included:

Source:  “China police crack down on counterfeit goods,” Channel News Asia, August 10, 2013.

The sale of illegal and counterfeit pesticides around the world generates $5.8 Billion (€4.4 Billion) in sales, according to the European Crop Protection Association. In Europe, the sales of the pesticides generates at least $1.2 Billion (€1 Billion).  Counterfeit and substandard pesticides make up to 10 percent of Europe’s total crop protection market.

Source:  Martha Moss, “EU urged to step up efforts on illegal and counterfeit pesticides,” The Parliament, March 28, 2013.

Officials with the Ministry of Agriculture stated that over 33,000 tons of counterfeit pesticides, seeds and other agriculture materials were seized in 2012.

Source:  Xinhua, “China to crack down on counterfeit agricultural materials,” People’s Daily, February 26, 2013.


In some markets within the European Union, up to 25 percent of the pesticides sold originated from the black market. These unauthorized pesticides are either substandard or are counterfeit versions of the pesticide.

Source: “Trade of illegal pesticides booming in Europe under control of organized crime,” Merco Press, January 13, 2012.

The sales of counterfeit products in Indonesia causes tax losses of up to $4.8 Billion (43.2 Trillion Indonesian Rupiahs) in 2010.

The following is the percentage of counterfeit goods that make up all sales in that category:

Product                     Counterfeit Percentage

Leather products              35.7

Software                             34.1

Automotive Parts             16.8

Electronic goods              13.7

Cigarettes                          11.5

Beverages                          8.9

Pesticides                          7.7

Cosmetics                          6.4

Drugs                                  3.5

Source: “Fake products cost RI Rp 43.2t in lost taxes,” Jakarta Post, November 5, 2011.

30 percent of the estimated 8,700 seed companies operating in China, or 2,610 companies, are believed to be involved in producing and selling counterfeit seeds to farmers.

Source: Zhou Siyu, “Sowing the seeds of doubt,” China Daily, August 3, 2011.

In the first half of 2011, Chinese authorities conducted 336 investigative cases on the counterfeiting of pesticides, seeds and fertilizers.

Counterfeit farming materials worth $23.5 Million (153 Million Yuan) was seized in the raids, along with 7,200 metric tons of counterfeit seeds.

Source: “China cracks down on counterfeit seeds, pesticides,” People Daily, May 19, 2011.

Below are losses to selected countries in Europe from counterfeit pesticides.



Czech Republic

4.19 Million


39.4 Million


13.3 Million


6.6 Million


22.9 Million


103 Million

Source: “Counterfeit Pesticides Across Europe-2008,” European Crop Protection Association, August 2008.

The trade in counterfeit pesticides in Malaysia is worth $19 Million (60 Million Malaysian Ringgits).


Counterfeit goods in Argentina account for 75 percent of all sales made within the country, according to an estimate published by the European Trade Commission.

Among the items in Argentina’s counterfeiting industry:

  • Counterfeit sparkling wine producers in Argentina sell 4 million bottles a year. The counterfeit bottles misappropriate the geographic indications of where the sparkling wine was produced, and sales of the counterfeit bottles make up to 50 percent of the total market.
  • The sale of counterfeit pesticides in Argentina leads to losses of $26 Million (18.5 Million Euros) for legitimate agrochemical producers.
  • Sales of counterfeit cigarettes account for 8.8 percent of all cigarettes sales in Argentina.
  • Up to $100 Million in revenue is lost each year due to movie and television piracy. The total losses is equal to about 52 percent of the total potential movie market.