The EU Commission this week confirmed it was withdrawing approval for diquat – a major herbicide used as a desiccant by potato growers. It cited the high risk of farm workers, bystanders and residents to diquat, as well as a high risk posed to birds.
Farmers Weekly in the UK reports today that approval was withdrawn at the same time for the fungicide thiram – an important seed treatment for sugar beet and oilseed rape; and pymetrozine, which controls peach potato aphid and other aphid species that spread virus in seed/ware potato crops.
Brussels has proposed a market withdrawal date for diquat of 4 May 2019, with a use-up period for growers until 4 February 2020. It wants thiram withdrawn by 30 January 2019 and pymetrozine gone three months later, with neither product used after 30 January 2020.