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Asmare, BA; Freyer, B; Bingen, J.
(2022): Women in agriculture: pathways of pesticide exposure, potential health risks and vulnerability in sub-Saharan Africa
ENVIRON SCI EUR. 2022; 34(1), 89 FullText FullText_BOKU

Background Pesticide exposure and its adverse impacts remain a major problem for women's health, but a comprehensive scientific literature and summaries are still missing. With a specific focus in sub-Saharan Africa, this paper provides an overview of the scientific literature on how women deal with and are exposed to pesticides and the specific circumstances that might affect their health. We identified previously published studies from Google Scholar, Pubmed, and other electronic libraries. Main body In addition to huge burden in the household, there is considerable evidence that women's role in smallholder as well as commercial farming has become more visible and intense in sub-Saharan Africa. However, it is evident that women are a major risk group disproportionately exposed to and are affected by pesticides through multiple pathways. Closely linked to their biological characteristics, lifestyle and behavior, women experience acute-to-chronic diseases from pesticides. Women's exposure to pesticides either during pregnancy or breastfeeding can pose a serious health risk for the fetus and the newborn babies. Conclusion Occupational as well as non-occupational exposure from pesticides seems to be grossly underestimated for women due to the perception that their work is not hazardous for their health and are not at risk of exposure. This is often the case why research on pesticide exposure and its adverse impacts for women's health remains scarce in sub-Saharan Africa, where pesticides are often misused and poorly regulated. Therefore, further research that addresses women's exposure to pesticides are strongly suggested.
Authors BOKU Wien:
Freyer Bernhard

Find related publications in this database (Keywords)
Adverse impacts
Biological characteristics
Pesticide exposure
Sub-Saharan Africa
Working conditions

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