Apr 15, 2020Proposed Changes in Neonicotinoid Labels Should Have Minor Impact on Desert Produce and Melons
Neonicotinoid insecticides have played a very important role in aphid and whitefly management in desert produce and melons since Admire 2F was first registered as a Sec. 18 in 1993. Since that time, several additional neonicotinoid active ingredients have been registered, and collectively the soil and foliar use of these compounds have become key components in our desert IPM programs. Most of you are likely aware that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been reevaluating the four neonicotinoid insecticides, clothianidin, dinotefuran, imidacloprid, and thiamethoxam, under the registration review program as mandated by FIFRA and FQPA of 1996 to implement risk mitigation. The agency recently released their Proposed Interim Registration Review Decisions (PID) for these four active ingredients (Feb 2, 2020) so that it can implement interim risk mitigation. Their risk mitigations were focused primarily on reducing risks to pollinators and aquatic invertebrates and have resulted in several important proposed changes to how the four neonicotinoids can be used in the future.
Most of the proposed changes were minor for leafy vegetables and brassica/Cole crops, however additional restrictions have been proposed for melon crops. I have prepared a summary of the proposed changes for clothianidin, dinotefuran, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam and the impacts these changes may have on desert leafy vegetable and melons in the following document: Impact of Proposed EPA Label Changes on Neonicotinoid Uses on Produce and Melon Crops in the Desert Southwest. The bottom line: based on my review of the PIDs for each neonicotinoid, I’ve concluded that the proposed changes to neonicotinoid labels should have minimal impact on production of leafy vegetable and melon crops in the desert southwest. However, melon growers may have to absorb additional expenses in managing whiteflies on spring melons. The impact of requiring applicators to use larger droplet sizes when applying neonicotinoids to mitigate drift and runoff is unknown.
For an overview of the mitigations proposed for all crops, the IR-4 program provided the following summary of mitigation for each neonicotinoid and links to EPA websites where you can find the PIDs and associated information – PID Mitigation Summary for Neonicotinoids. If you have any issues with EPAs proposed changes, I strongly encourage you to submit a letter with your concerns to the EPA through their Open Docket for Comment and Review process which closes on May 4, 2020 unless extended. If you need additional information or want to discuss this information further, please contact me.
Stay Safe!To contact John Palumbo go to: jpalumbo@ag.Arizona.edu