Cultivation/Production, Health/Nutrition/Food Safety, North America, Trends

Canadian potato growers scramble to save mancozeb from Health Canada onslaught

Mancozeb is on the regulatory chopping block in Canada, according to a report by the Manitoba Co-Operator.

The Co-Operator reports that Manitoba potato producers are being urged to share how they use the chemical as their industry attempts to preserve it as an aerial fungicide, and they have just days to do it.

Why it matters: Health Canada has proposed a ban on mancozeb for potatoes and other horticultural crops. Meanwhile, Manitoba potato producers argue that the ban will eliminate an aerial fungicide tool in a province very reliant on aerial application.

The Canadian Horticultural Society has released a grower survey detailing farm mancozeb use such as number of applications, rates or the pathogen being targeted.

“Right now, they make assumptions based on the highest rate in all the applications to understand how the environment and worker safety is being affected, but if they’re able to find out better data on what is actually happening, then we might be able to keep some of these products,” Darin Gibson, president and research agronomist at Gaia Consulting said.

He said it’s likely that less of the product is getting into the environment than regulators are assuming.

The federal proposal would cancel mancozeb for all uses outside of greenhouse-grown tobacco.

Read the full story on the Manitoba Co-Operator

Editor & Publisher: Lukie Pieterse

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