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EPA Approves New 5-Year Registration for Dicamba Products

Late yesterday (10/27/2020) EPA approved a new 5-year registration for 2 low-volatility dicamba products and extended the registration for another dicamba product.

The new registration for 2 over-the-top (OTT) dicamba products include Xtendimax® with VaporGrip Technology® (Bayer) and Engenia® Herbicide (BASF). The extended registration is for Tavium® Plus VaporGrip Technology® (Syngenta).

“The 2020 EPA registration features include the following control measures to manage off-site movement:

  • Requiring an approved pH-buffering agent (also called a Volatility Reduction Agent or VRA) be tank mixed with OTT dicamba products prior to all applications to control volatility.
  • Requiring a downwind buffer of 240 feet 310 feet in areas where listed species are located.
  • Prohibiting OTT applications of dicamba on soybeans after June 30.
  • Simplifying the label and use directions so that growers can more easily determine when and how to properly apply dicamba.

The 2020 registration labels also provide new flexibilities for growers and states.  For example, there are opportunities for growers to reduce the downwind spray buffer for soybeans through the use of certain approved hooded sprayers as an alternative control method.  EPA also recognizes and supports the important authority FIFRA 24 gives the states for issuing locally appropriate regulations for pesticide use.  If a state wishes to expand the federal OTT uses of dicamba to better meet special local needs, the agency will work with them to support their goals.

This action was informed by input from state regulators, grower groups, academic researchers, pesticide manufacturers, and others.  EPA reviewed substantial amounts of new information and conducted assessments based on the best available science, including making Effect Determinations under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).  With this information and input, EPA concluded that these registrations actions meet Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) registration standards.  EPA believes that these new analyses address the concerns expressed in regard to EPA’s 2018 dicamba registrations in the June 2020 U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.  Further, EPA concluded that with the control measures now required on labels, these actions either do not affect or are not likely to adversely affect endangered or threatened species.”*

This is great news for growers as now it gives them certainty for the use of low-volatility dicamba products on soybeans.  Growers can confidently plant Xtend® or XtendFlex® soybeans in 2021 knowing they will continue to have this valuable weed control tool.

This news comes on the recent announcement of the full launch approval for XtendFlex® soybean seed for 2021 planting.

*EPA News Release from Headquarters>Chemical Safety & Pollution Prevention (OCSPP) 10/27/2020.