EPA Decision to Register Isoxaflutole Taking Heat

Apr 16, 2020

ASA submitted comments in February to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) supporting registration of a new use of Isoxaflutole on herbicide resistant soybeans. Registration was confirmed publicly by EPA in March but has recently come into question in mainstream media.

Isoxaflutole’s broad weed control spectrum, low use rates and tank mix compatibility with registered soybean herbicides make it an ideal foundation herbicide. It can be easily adapted into integrated pest management (IPM) programs, making it an appealing tool for helping soybean growers manage weed resistance.

In EPA’s release, Administrator Andrew Wheeler said, “We’ve heard from countless farmers on the importance of having new tools available to combat economically-damaging weeds…We listened and believe this action balances the need to provide growers with tools to combat weeds while ensuring protection of our country’s endangered species.”

ASA relies on EPA and other regulatory agencies to thoroughly review crop protection tools for use, benefits, and impacts on human and environmental health. Significant comments from ASA in support of registration include: Continuing to grow safe and affordable food to feed an estimated 9.7 billion people by 2050; using the correct, approved tools in a healthy IPM program to thereby reduce soil erosion and decrease pesticide use, and, as a result, grow a more affordable product while reducing impacts on the environment.

ASA’s President, Bill Gordon, was also quoted in the EPA registration release, Safe and effective weed management is a constant challenge that farmers face. EPA’s registration of Isoxaflutole will provide soybean growers with an important new tool to combat damaging weeds and help better control emerging herbicide-resistance issues.”

More of Gordon’s quote and questions posed in the media can be found here.