EPA Facing Time Crunch on Dicamba Decisions

DTN writer Emily Unglesbee reported last week that, “As the fall seed-buying season advances, EPA is facing a major time crunch on its dicamba herbicide decisions.

“The agency had originally vowed to have a re-registration decision for four dicamba herbicides — Tavium (Syngenta), Engenia (BASF), XtendiMax (Bayer) and FeXapan (Corteva) — settled by early fall so farmers could buy their corresponding dicamba-tolerant seed with the certainty of in-season weed control options.

“All four herbicides were set to expire in December 2020, but when a Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ ruling vacated all but one of those herbicides, EPA’s timeline was thrown into disarray. (See more here: https://www.dtnpf.com/…)”

The DTN article stated that, “The agency is now in the process of reviewing new products and new registration applications for two of those herbicides — Engenia and Xtendimax — while also still doing its planned re-registration review of Tavium. (FeXapan is the same formulation as XtendiMax, so any future registrations of it depend upon a successful XtendiMax registration, Corteva has informed DTN.)

The situation has caused uncertainty for growers considering dicamba-tolerant seed purchases for use in 2021, prompting one company, Bayer, to offer a new ‘Plant with Confidence’ program to offset that financial risk for farmers.”

Last week’s article added that, “Bayer is marketing its RR2 Xtend soybeans for use in 2021, as well as XtendFlex cotton and soybeans, which tolerate dicamba, glyphosate and glufosinate (Liberty).

“While the company is still waiting on a final import approval from the EU for the XtendFlex soybean trait, it is preparing for a commercial launch of the trait in 2021 of up to 20 million acres, roughly half the current footprint of Xtend soybeans in the U.S.”

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