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EPA cancellation order clarifies use of existing dicamba stocks

dicambaThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has issued a cancellation order for three low-volatility dicamba formulations that is intended to clarify how growers and applicators may use existing stocks of the products.

The directive applies to XtendiMax with Vapor Grip Technology from Bayer, Engenia from BASF and FeXipan from Corteva. They are paired with crops genetically engineered to tolerate in-season over-the-top applications of the dicamba 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,” EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler said in a statement. “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.”

Details of the order

1. Distribution or sale by any person is generally prohibited except for ensuring proper disposal or return to the registrant.

2. Growers and commercial applicators may use existing stocks that were in their possession on June 3, 2020, the effective date of the court decision. Such use must be consistent with the product’s previously approved label and may not continue after July 31, 2020.

Court ruling background

The EPA’s cancellation order was prompted by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit vacating current U.S. registrations for the three low-volatility dicamba products June 3.

The court ruling pertains specifically to EPA’s decision in late 2018 to issue a conditional registration for another two years for the three dicamba products used in season and over the top of Xtend crops. The conditional registration would have expired in December 2020.

Tavium Plus Vapor Grip Technology, a Syngenta premix that contains dicamba and S-metolachlor, is not part of the court order because it was registered in 2019

The legal challenge was filed by the National Family Farm Coalition, Center for Food Safety, Center for Biological Diversity, and Pesticide Action Network North America.

The petitioners contended in the suit and in oral arguments made in April that the EPA based its decision on insufficient evidence and therefore violated the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act.