Use of Asulox for bracken control

A herbicide previously used to control bracken on farms in Scotland, will not be authorised for use this season because of the risks it poses to the environment and human health. The same decision has been taken in Wales.

For the past 10 years Asulox has been approved annually as part of an emergency authorisation process on behalf of the UK administrations by the Health and Safety Executive (HSE). However, this year HSE considers that, for the first time, the use of the herbicide does not meet the legislative requirements for emergency authorisation.

Scottish Ministers have confirmed to HSE that they agree to the recommendation to refuse the 2023 emergency authorisation application for the use of Asulox for control of bracken. This follows existing precedent for decisions over pesticide approvals for Scotland being exercised on behalf of Scottish Ministers by HSE. On the evidence set out, Scottish Ministers did not consider there was any basis to not follow the HSE recommendation and process.


Use of Asulox for bracken control - full press release (

Published on: 26 June, 2023