New pesticide regulations came into effect on 18th July 2012 in the UK, effectively removing grandfather rights for sprayer operators, and requiring mandatory testing for spraying equipment; with the exception of hand held and knapsack sprayers.
Existing certificates of competence for spray operators are, and will be still recognised.
National Sprayer Testing Scheme is sufficient to cover new regulations.
From 26 November 2015, anyone applying a professional pesticide will require a certificate of competence, hence all grandfather rights removed (people born before 31 December 1964). However proof of continual professional development (CPD) will possibly count toward new compulsory certification to be introduced in 2013 for people with grandfather rights.
Certificates will be needed for all purchases of professional pesticides after 26 November 2015 unless the farmer is buying for a Contractor.
Anyone using a Contractor and buying the pesticide for that Contractor is responsible for ensuring the Contractor has a certificate of competence. This applies to livestock farmers as well as arable farmers.
For more information go to: http://www.pesticides.gov.uk/guidance/industries/pesticides/topics/reducing-environmental-impact/national-pesticides-strategy/phasing-out-of-grandfather-rights-for-pesticide-users