Pests and Diseases

Canada: Curtailing chlorothalonil

On Feb. 11, 2016, Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency published an amendment to the proposed re-evaluation decision for chlorothalonil (REV2016-06) that was first published in 2011. If adopted, the amendment will significantly restrict and in some instances remove certain uses for chlorothalonil, an active ingredient in pesticides widely used to control fungal diseases in not only potatoes but other crops as well. Craig Hunter, a pesticide expert with the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers’ Association and a world authority on minor use of crop protection materials, says that “ in 2011, PMRA had accepted a 21-day scientifically valid dermal toxicity study on the effects of chlorothalonil”. However, he maintained that “PMRA regulators are re-evaluating chlorothalonil using non-scientifically valid data, and that the agency did not ask the registrants for extra data such as 90-and 180-day dermal toxicity studies that could have provided this scientific data.” Craig also argued that “the amended risk assessment that PMRA conducted included many assumptions on agronomic practices that are inaccurate and/or outdated, and are not indicative of how chlorothalonil is used in modern potato production.” More

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