On November 12, 2015, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a cancellation of sulfoxaflor, an insecticide active ingredient effective for managing insect pests with piercing sucking mouthparts including several species of aphids.
"This ruling was in response to concerns regarding the safety of pollinators in areas where sulfoxaflor could be applied," explained Adam Varenhorst, SDSU Extension Entomology Specialist.
Sulfoxaflor is toxic to bees with activity from the time of application until the product dries. After which, there doesn't appear to be extended residual toxicity.
In response to the ruling, the issue of pollinator safety will be addressed in further EPA reviews of the data available regarding sulfoxaflor.
The EPA issued an existing stocks provision for farmers who already purchased and possess sulfoxaflor containing products.
For those individuals, products containing sulfoxaflor can be applied in a manner that is consistent with the directions of the pre-existing product labels.
Varenhorst explained that this existing stocks provision DOES NOT allow existing inventories of products containing sulfoxaflor to be sold or distributed to end-users (farmers) while further evaluations continue.
In response to the ruling, Dow AgroSciences issued a press release stating, "Dow AgroSciences continues to work diligently with EPA and states to achieve new registrations as quickly as possible to allow for your inventories to be sold to growers. To that end, Dow AgroSciences submitted new labels for consideration to EPA on November 16, 2015. In addition, it is our understanding that several states are now in the process of submitting or developing Section 18 applications for the 2016 season which can increase the potential to use your existing inventory."