Dicamba Issues: Monsanto Challenges Arkansas Ban

DTN writer Emily Unglesbee reported recently that, “Monsanto showed what it will tolerate, and what it won’t tolerate, when it comes to states’ reactions to the 2017 season’s unprecedented dicamba drift damage complaints.

“The St. Louis-based company on Thursday said it has filed an aggressive petition to the Arkansas State Plant Board, demanding it reject the state’s proposed in-season ban on dicamba herbicides within 30 days or risk legal action.

“That response contrasts with the company’s newly announced take on actions in Indiana. The state recently said it is completing the process to make dicamba a restricted use pesticide, keeping the herbicide available in 2018, albeit with restrictions on purchasing and use. Monsanto indicated it was now supportive of that restriction and similar actions in Missouri and Tennessee.”

The DTN article noted that, “In the meantime, the entire industry is awaiting an expected decision by EPA on new federal guidelines or regulations for dicamba herbicides next year, in light of more than 2,200 dicamba-related injury state investigations concerning more than 3.1 million acres of dicamba-injured soybeans.”

The DTN article pointed out that, “‘We’re anxious to take these crops to harvest throughout the U.S. and see what type of experience these growers really have,’ Scott Partridge, Monsanto’s vice president of global strategy, told DTN.

The petition insists that volatility was not the primary cause of physical drift, citing Monsanto’s own studies, and points instead to herbicide contamination, illegal use of older dicamba formulations and applicator errors.”

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