The EPA removed the insecticide from the market in 2015 because of bee health concerns
By Diego Flammini
U.S. producers will once again be able to use an insecticide after the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) granted it a long-term approval.
The EPA will allow the use of the insecticide sulfoxaflor on corn, soybeans, cotton, sorghum and other crops, the agency announced on July 12.
The formulation belongs to Dow AgroSciences, now Corteva Agriscience, which markets the product under the trade name Isoclast. It’s found in the company’s Transform, Closer and Sequoia insecticides, and helps control pests such as aphids, psyllids and thrips.
The EPA’s decision will provide “long-term certainty for U.S. growers to use an important tool to protect crops and avoid potentially significant economic losses, while maintaining strong protection for pollinators,” Alexandra Dapolito Dunn, assistant administrator for the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, said in a statement.
Sulfoxaflor will be available to some U.S. farmers after a four-year suspension.
The Obama administration removed the product from the market in 2015 after some beekeepers launched a lawsuit. A 2016 court decision allowed the use of the product but only on crops that didn’t attract pollinators.
As part of the renewed approval, product labels will have to include a statement acknowledging that the insecticide is “highly toxic to bees and other pollinating insects…”
And farmers will have to notify any beekeepers within one mile of the field at least 48 hours before product application.
Corteva is pleased with the EPA’s decision to put this crop protection product back into the hands of U.S. producers.
“Growers should have access to tools that can be used safely according to the product label,” the organization told Farms.com in an email. “Isoclast active was developed to provide an alternative that helps reduce stress on the environment.”