Bayer CropScience to phase out US sales of pesticide aldicarb

17 August 2010 20:10  [Source: ICIS news]

WASHINGTON (ICIS)--The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said on Tuesday that Bayer CropScience has agreed to phase-out production and sale of the pesticide aldicarb for health reasons, although Bayer said it does not agree with the finding.

The agency said that by the end of 2011, Bayer CropScience will cease prescribing aldicarb for citrus crops and potatoes.

Bayer will cease production of aldicarb by the end of 2014, and remaining uses of the pesticide for such crops as cotton, dry beans, peanuts, soybeans, sugar beets and sweet potatoes will be phased out by the end of August 2018, according to the agency.

The EPA said it asked Bayer CropScience to phase out production and use of aldicarb - marketed under the Temik brand - because a new agency risk assessment determined that the pesticide “no longer meets the agency’s rigorous food safety standards” and may pose health risks to infants and young children.

However, the agency also indicated that aldicarb is found in food samples at levels below those shown to cause health problems.

Bayer said in a statement that for nearly 40 years aldicarb has provided farmers with “unsurpassed control of destructive pests without compromising human health or environmental safety”.

“Although the company does not fully agree with this new risk assessment approach” by the EPA, “Bayer CropScience respects the oversight authority of the EPA and is cooperating with them.”

“This new assessment,” Bayer said, “does not mean that aldicarb poses an actual risk.”

Although the EPA said the deadline to eliminate aldicarb in US agriculture would be the end of August 2018, Bayer said that it would discontinue marketing the pesticide in the US and worldwide by the end of 2014.

EPA officials were not immediately available to provide details of the new risk assessment.

Bayer CropScience did not disclose sales figures for Temik.

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