Bee pollinator issue more complicated than folks think

The crop protection industry vows not to let a recent report from EPA go unchallenged.

“EPA finds neonicotinoid seed treatments of little or no benefit to U.S. soybean production,” the EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention said in a recent release.

The study, which comes as EPA is under pressure from environmental activist groups to withdraw the registrations of neonicotinoid insecticides because they claim they are a threat to bees, caused quite a bit of consternation in the farm chemical industry.

EPA reports: “There is no increase in soybean yield using most neonicotinoid seed treatments compared to no pest control at all.”

The industry takes umbrage.

“On the 15th of October, we got an October surprise from EPA when they issued this very cursory report saying they had done a benefits analysis and found there are little to no benefits for the use of seed treatments of neonicotinoids on soybeans,” said Jay Vroom, CEO of CropLife America, the organization representing  crop protection chemical manufacturers.

“That is a great reminder to me that part of the truth is way more harmful and damaging than an outright lie, and, unfortunately, our friends at EPA know that a lot better than we do.”

Vroom, speaking at the Southern Crop Production Association annual meeting in New Orleans, said the industry was determined not to let the claims go unchallenged and began responding almost immediately after the EPA press release hit the streets. Read more.

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