EPA issues new dicamba requirements

Success of six new application requirements will determine whether dicamba formulations will continue to be available for soybeans beyond 2018.

10-17_tech _companies _agree _additional _dicamba _label _restrictions _1_636434910820671554

Spraying dicamba only when wind speeds are below 10 mph is one of six new or revised label restrictions for over-the-top use on soybeans. (Illinois Farm Bureau file photo)

By Deana Stroisch

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Friday announced stricter requirements for “over the top” use of dicamba during the 2018 growing season.

EPA worked with states, land-grant universities and Monsanto, BASF and DuPont to examine the underlying causes of recent crop damage.

Illinois Farm Bureau’s Tamara Nelsen said the requirements allow farmers to have access to the latest weed-control technologies next year.

“EPA clearly heard the concerns of farmers affected by off-target movement of dicamba products this year as well as those with keen interest in having the latest weed control products in their toolbox,” said Nelsen, senior director of commodities. “For IFB and our members, stewardship of crop-protection products will remain a priority in the coming year and beyond.”

EPA said the manufacturers voluntarily agreed to classify the product as “restricted use,” which allows only certified applicators with special training and those under their supervision to apply it.

Other new requirements will include:

- Requiring farmers to maintain specific records about the product’s use.

- Only allowing the product to be applied when winds are below 10 mph to reduce potential spray drift. The restriction is currently at 15 mph.

- Reducing the times during the day when applications can occur.

- Including tank clean-out language to prevent cross-contamination.

- Manufacturers have agreed to a process to have the revised labels ready in time for the 2018 growing season – even relabeling products currently in the marketplace, if needed.

“EPA will monitor the success of these changes to help inform our decision whether to allow the continued ‘over the top’ use of dicamba beyond the 2018 growing season,” according to EPA’s announcement. 

Content for this story was provided by FarmWeekNow.com.

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