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EPA Takes Next Step to Cancel Use of Bayer Insecticide

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a notice of intent to cancel all Bayer CropScience and Nichino America insecticides that contain flubendiamide.

In February, Bayer CropScience refused the EPA request to voluntarily pull its insecticide Belt, which contains flubendiamide. Instead, Bayer will seek a review of the product’s registration in an administrative law hearing to dispute the EPA’s claim.

An EPA release says that flubendiamide products pose a risk to aquatic invertebrates that are important to the health of aquatic environments. EPA requested a voluntary cancellation in accordance with the conditions of the original registration. It stated that if EPA found unreasonable adverse effects on the environment, the companies would submit a request for voluntary cancellation of all flubendiamide registrations within one week of EPA notification.

Studies showed flubendiamide breaks down into a more highly toxic material that is harmful to species that are an important part of aquatic food chains, especially for fish, and is persistent in the environment, according to the EPA release. EPA concluded that continued use of the product would result in unreasonable adverse effects on the environment.

Now the EPA has initiated cancellation of all currently registered flubendiamide products for the manufacturers’ failure to comply with the terms of the registration, according to the EPA release. Flubendiamide is registered for use on over 200 crops, including soybeans, almonds, tobacco, peanuts, cotton, lettuce, alfalfa, tomatoes, watermelon, and bell peppers.

Crops that have been properly treated with flubendiamide or that may be treated with existing stocks of flubendiamide can still be sold legally.

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