Anyone who wishes to use chemicals professionally or commercially must obtain a special licence and must prove that they have the required specialist knowledge.
Special licences are required for the following activities:
- the professional or commercial or industrial use of plant protection products in agriculture and in horticulture, in forestry and in other specialist fields
- the professional or commercial/ industrial use of wood preservatives
- handling refrigerants in the manufacture, installation, servicing or disposal of appliances or installations
- use of fumigants for pest control
- professional or commercial or industrial use of pesticides on behalf of clients
- professional or commercial or industrial use of disinfectants for water in public swimming pools and baths
Proof of specialist knowledge
Anyone who wishes to obtain a special licence must sit a test to prove that they have the required specialist knowledge of the relevant activity. The following organisations and testing agencies are responsible for the tests:
Liste der Trägerschaften und Prüfungsstellen für die Sachkenntnis (ChemV) und Fachbewilligungen (ChemRRV) (PDF, 492 kB, 15.10.2018)(available in German, French and Italian)
The FOEN or the FOPH may recognise qualifications from colleges or vocational education institutions as equivalent if they meet the requirements of the Ordinance on Special Licences.
Liste der als Fachbewilligung oder Sachkenntnis anerkannten Ausbildungsabschlüsse (PDF, 838 kB, 15.11.2018)(in German, French and Italian)
Applications for the recognition of qualifications must be submitted with the course curriculum and examination regulations to:
Air Pollution Control and Chemicals Division
Tel: +41 58 462 93 12, +41 58 462 69 70,
Qualifications that are recognised by DETEC as equivalent under the current law qualify as a special licence under the new ordinances from 28 June 2005.
Ordinances on the Regulation of Special Licences
Five DETEC Ordinances and three DHA Ordinances regulate the details of the various special licences.
Five DETEC Ordinances on the new law on chemicals require a special licence for the professional or commercial or industrial use of plant protection products and wood preservatives as well as for the professional or commercial handling of refrigerants. They are further intended to guarantee the careful and environmentally sound use of these chemicals and replace the previous Departmental Ordinances of 1991 and 1993. (These texts are not yet available in English)
Three DHA Ordinances on the new law on chemicals require a special licence for the use of fumigants in pest control as well as for the professional, commercial or industrial use of pesticides and of disinfectants for water used in public swimming pools and baths. They are intended to ensure that adequate protection continues to be guaranteed when dealing with these chemicals.
Last modification 19.11.2018