Congressman Michael Guest (R-MS) and Congressman Sanford Bishop (D-GA) led a bipartisan letter encouraging the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Andrew Wheeler, to issue new registrations for four dicamba products. Because the Ninth Circuit Court’s ruling in June of this year vacated prior registrations for Engenia®, Xtendimax®, and FeXapan®, many farmers face an uncertain future about the use of products they rely on to help manage soybean, cotton, and other crops. New registrations of the products would help clarify the use of these critical products as farmers begin making decisions on their management strategies for next year.
“I am pleased to join my colleagues in this bipartisan effort. We are working in support of American farmers and trying to bring confidence and clarity to our producers before the upcoming crop year,” Congressman Michael Guest said. Last year’s court decision put in jeopardy millions of acres of crops across our country, and especially Mississippi. As our farmers continue to battle a pandemic, natural disasters, and fluctuating markets, it is critical they have the tools necessary to a successful growing season.”
“The 9th Circuit court ruling to vacate the registration for dicamba products Engenia®, Xtendimax®, and FeXapan®was disruptive to our farming community nationwide as well as in Georgia. Our farm producers are now faced with identifying alternative weed control methods. As the next growing season approaches, the release of a new registration with the most up-to-date, scientifically based data will aid in meeting the demands for our food supply chain,” said Congressman Sanford Bishop
A bipartisan group of 30 Members of Congress joined the letter. A copy of the letter is available here.
You can find the full text of the letter below:
Dear Administrator Wheeler:
We write today to encourage the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to issue new registrations for dicamba products Engenia®, Xtendimax®, FeXapan®, and Tavium®. We also support issuance of these registrations quickly and in simple, clear, and understandable language so that producers can make herbicide and seed purchasing decisions ahead of the 2021 crop year.
We understand that the Agency’s decision on new dicamba registrations has been challenging due to the June decision by the 9th Circuit Court to vacate all three registrations. However, we also understand the EPA now has newer data and information on the products, as well as information from states on the effectiveness of stewardship and training programs that have been recently implemented, and we are confident that the EPA will be able to address the issues raised by the court.
These three products are used across millions of acres of dicamba-tolerant soybean, cotton, and other crops to manage broadleaf weeds throughout the crop growing season. It is especially important for these crops that weed control is managed throughout the growing season, not simply until crop-emergence. The ability to control weed growth, regardless of when weeds occur during the growing process, ensures a full, successful crop. We hope that any new registration will allow for the over the top application of the dicamba products throughout the growing season.
Without new registrations, the industry may not be able to handle the demand shifts that would result from the unavailability of these products. During these trying times for our producers, in which they have battled a pandemic, natural disasters, and fluctuating markets, it would be unfair to subject them to such changes that may impact the cost and effectiveness of their growing season. Without these products, we are also removing an additional crop protection tool that is critical to producers, as they have invested significantly into the dicamba tolerant trait crop.
We appreciate the support your agency has provided to our farmers and ranchers. We encourage EPA to proceed swiftly with new registrations for these dicamba products so that our producers can have a clear and understandable direction going into the 2021 crop year.