U.S. EPA Finds Negligible Benefits of Neonicotinoid Seed Treatment In Soybeans.
By Joe Dales, Farms.com
The agriculture use of the neonicotinoid class seed treatments is being reviewed by regulators in the United States and Canada after concerns have been raised that the products may contribute to the decline in populations of honeybees.
The EPA in a news statement released Thursday reports that an analysis of neonicotinoid seed treatments has concluded that there is "little or no increase in soybean yields using most neonicotinoid seed treatments when compared to using no pest control at all."
"We have made the review of neonicotinoid pesticides a high priority," Jim Jones, assistant administrator for EPA's Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention, said in a statement. "In our analysis of the economic benefits of this use we concluded that, on a national scale, U.S. soybean farmers see little or no benefit from neonicotinoid seed treatments."
Honey producers say neonics weaken the bees and worsen the effects of parasitic mites and viruses, and contribute to increasing overwintering deaths.
The EPA will continue to analyze the neonicotinoid seed treatments in an assessment of the risks and benefits under registration review, with a special focus on the negative impact on pollinators.
EPA does recognize that neonicotinoid seed treatments, however, could provide an insurance benefit against sporadic and unpredictable insect pests, but this potential benefit is not likely to be large or widespread throughout the United States.
For more information and to find the EPA report, click on the following link.