Missouri Joins Dicamba Ban; New Emergency Rules in Tennessee
Missouri became the second state to ban dicamba on July 7, following a decision by an Arkansas legislative committee to do the same, as complaints about the herbicide drifting onto neighboring farms continue to build in the Mid-South.
Grower and Missouri Soybean Association President Matt McCrate commented after the decision that the association has heard a “steady stream of growers’ frustrations in recent weeks around dicamba – specifically, inversions, suspected off-label use and drift, as well as feeling the need to invest in technology you might not otherwise choose as a type of insurance policy against damage.”
McCrate added: “With upwards of 200,000 soybean acres suspected damaged by dicamba products already during the 2017 growing season, it’s clear that action is needed. The impact already seen across Missouri demands that all involved take steps to prevent additional damage and develop management solutions for this year and the years ahead.”
The following statement from the Missouri Department of Agriculture was issued on Friday, July 7:
Effective immediately, Missouri Director of Agriculture Chris Chinn issued a Stop Sale, Use or Removal Order on all products labeled for agricultural use that contain dicamba in Missouri. All on-farm applications of dicamba products must cease immediately.
Since Jan. 1, 2017, the Department’s Bureau of Pesticide Control has received more than 130 pesticide drift complaints that are believed to be related to dicamba, which has allegedly damaged thousands of acres of crops. The decision to issue a Stop Sale, Use or Removal Order in Missouri was made with an abundance of caution and is temporary until a more permanent solution is reached.
“We want to protect farmers and their livelihoods. At the same time, my commitment to technology and innovation in agriculture is unwavering,” Director of Agriculture Chris Chinn said. “That’s why I am asking the makers of these approved post-emergent products, researchers and farmers to work with us to determine how we can allow applications to resume this growing season, under certain agreed upon conditions.”
Pesticide distributors and retailers must immediately stop all sales and offers of sales of all dicamba products labeled for agricultural use. All agricultural pesticide users, including certified commercial applicators and private applicators, must immediately cease in-crop, post-emergent use of all dicamba products. Products include, but are not limited to:
- FeXapan herbicide plus VaporGrip Technology, EPA Registration Number 352-913;
- Engenia Herbicide, EPA Registration Number 7969-345; and
- XTENDIMAX with VaporGrip Technology, EPA Registration Number 524-617
Distributors, retailers and pesticide applicators in possession of dicamba products labeled for agricultural use are advised not to sell or use the products until the stop sale expires or is lifted. Sale, use or removal of such products would be a violation of Section 281.101 RSMo and subject to civil penalties.
“With only a small window left for application in this growing season, I understand the critical need to resolve this issue,” Director Chinn said. “I look forward to working with our farmers, researchers and industry partners to find an immediate solution.”
More detailed information about this issue, dicamba and the department’s role in investigations is available online.
The Tennessee Department of Agriculture has filed emergency rules for use of dicamba products within the state. The rules became effective July 11 and will remain in effect until October 1.
In accordance with the new rules:
- Anyone applying dicamba products must be certified as a private applicator or licensed as a pest control operator in the category of Agricultural Pest Control (AGE), and is required to keep records for such applications.
- The use of older formulations of dicamba products for the remainder of this agricultural growing season is prohibited.
- To minimize the potential for off-target movement of the product due to temperature inversion, dicamba may only be applied from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the respective time zone for the location of application.
- Applying dicamba over the top of cotton after first bloom is prohibited.
Additional information from the Tennessee emergency rule is available online.