EPA issues order on dicamba de-registration


Update, as of 6pm June 8: The EPA issued an order late Monday that prohibits the sale and distribution of the three dicamba herbicides. Farmers and applicators may use existing stocks that were in their possession on June 3 until July 31, 2020. We are seeking clarification on what this means where state governments have told farmers they can use these products.

“At the height of the growing season, the Court’s decision has threatened the livelihood of our nation’s farmers and the global food supply,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler. “Today’s cancellation and existing stocks order is consistent with EPA’s standard practice following registration invalidation, and is designed to advance compliance, ensure regulatory certainty, and to prevent the misuse of existing stocks.”

Bayer also released a statement welcoming the EPA’s action and have updated its webpage with the latest information for customers at www.RoundupReadyXtend.com/XtendimaxUpdates. Bayer says it will continue working with the EPA, growers, academics, and others to provide long-term access to dicamba. 

The decision of a U.S. court to cancel the registration of in-crop use of dicamba herbicides has created significant confusion and inconsistent rules between neighbouring states on whether or not farmers are allowed to apply the product to already planted and growing dicamba-tolerant crops.

Administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Andrew Wheeler, says of the de-registration that they are “disappointed with the decision. The 2020 growing season is well underway and this creates undue burden for our first conservationists – farmers. EPA has been overwhelmed with letters and calls from farmers nationwide since the Court issued its opinion, and these testimonies cite the devastation of this decision on their crops and the threat to America’s food supply.

“The Court itself noted in this order that it will place a great hardship on America’s farmers. This ruling implicates millions of acres of crops, millions of dollars already spent by farmers, and the food and fiber Americans across the country rely on to feed their families. EPA is assessing all avenues to mitigate the impact of the Court’s decision on farmers.”

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) also expressed its disappointment in the 9th Circuit court decision to vacate the EPA’s federal registrations for three dicamba products, Xtendimax (Bayer), FeXapan (Corteva), and Engenia (BASF), on June 3rd, 2020.

“Farmers rely on EPA’s science-based process for developing appropriate and safe guidelines for the use of crop protection products,” NCGA says in a statement. “NCGA urges the EPA to immediately appeal this ruling and obtain a stay of this overreaching court order. This decision to remove a weed control option, especially in the middle of the season, adds yet another challenge to an already difficult time and sets a concerning precedent.”

The NCGA is also asking the EPA provide “clarifying guidance” on allowing the use of the existing stock of the herbicides. Farmers have invested in previously allowed dicamba products, EPA should offer clarifying guidance and allow the use of existing stocks.

Farmers with product on-hand may or may not use it, depending on which state they live in. At this time, farmers are being encouraged to seek legal counsel on ramifications of spraying any of the three products.

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