Monday, February 08, 2016

Bayer refuses to pull insecticide from U.S. market

Bayer CropScience, the agricultural unit of German chemicals company Bayer AG, on Friday rejected a request from the Environmental Protection Agency "to pull one of its insecticides from the marketplace amid concerns that it could harm organisms in streams and ponds," Karl Plume reports for Reuters. "Bayer CropScience will instead ask for an administrative law hearing from the EPA's Office of General Counsel to review the registration of flubendiamide, the active ingredient in Bayer's Belt pesticide." EPA said the registration, granted in 2008, "was a limited-time conditional registration that could be canceled if additional studies found the chemical to be damaging."

"Flubendiamide products are used to control yield-damaging moths and worms in more than 200 crops including almonds, oranges and soybeans," Plume writes. "Bayer's own tests have found that the pesticide is toxic in high doses to invertebrates in river and pond sediment. The organisms can be an important food source for fish. However, the company's field studies showed that doses in waters near agricultural fields never reached high enough levels to be toxic." EPA said it will issue a formal request to cancel the pesticide's registration. The product will remain on shelves until the process pending the outcome of the process. (Read more)

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