A federal judge with the U.S. District Court of Arizona in Tucson this week vacated the 2020 registrations of three dicamba products previously approved by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for over-the-top (OTT) applications for soybeans and cotton.
OTT dicamba products Xtendimax (Bayer), Engenia (BASF) and Tavium (Syngenta) were all included in the decision, which may leave farmers across the U.S. without the option to use these herbicides in the upcoming growing season.
U.S. District Court judge David Bury says that the EPA violated the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act’s public input requirement before giving its approval.
Daren Coppock, President & CEO of the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) says he strongly disagrees with the court’s decision.
“The timing of the decision is problematic. Farmers have already made their decisions about what varieties of cotton and soybean seed they want to plant in 2024, and retailers are already stocking not only the seed but also the herbicides these growers will need for their systems. A grower who chooses dicamba-tolerant seed is also choosing to use a dicamba product in their weed control program; otherwise, they would not buy dicamba-tolerant seed. This court decision, issued after those plans have been made and while retailers are procuring the products necessary to fulfill them, comes at the worst possible time in the season,” said Coppock.
ARA and crop protection companies are likely to request a stay of the decision during an appeal.