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EPA Issues Existing Stocks Order for OTT Dicamba Use in 2024

(WASHINGTON D.C.)– Farmers and ranchers now have certainty on the use of over the top dicamba products in soybeans and cotton for the 2024 growing season. After a District Court ruling in Arizona last week vacated the use of over the top dicamba products such as Engenia, XtendiMax and Tavium from BASF, Bayer and Syngenta; EPA has issued an existing stocks order for the 2024 growing season.

The existing stocks order will allow people other than the product registrants (ag co-ops, ag retailers, commercial applicators, etc) to sell dicamba products already in their possession before February 6th, 2024. That also includes farmers who had already purchased dicamba products before February 6th, 2024. There will be end dates for sale and distribution of OTT dicamba products that vary by state.

Various ag groups have been calling on EPA to issue an existing stocks order in recent days following that court ruling in Arizona. You can see various reaction below to the news. Also, you can get more on this story from our partners at DTN/Progressive Farmer and DTN Crops Editor Jason Jenkins here:

ASA Applauds EPA Existing Stocks Order for Dicamba Ahead of Soy Planting

Washington, D.C. February 14, 2024. With millions of dollars of product on the line and few fast alternatives available before spring planting, the American Soybean Association is exceptionally appreciative of the Environmental Protection Agency’s swift actions to issue an existing stocks order and allow farmers planning to use dicamba product for 2024 to receive and use it this season.

Josh Gackle, ASA president and soybean farmer from North Dakota, said, “The court’s decision on dicamba instantly left tens of millions of acres of U.S. farmland in limbo—and in limbo a matter of weeks before spring planting. We appreciate the certainty EPA’s existing stocks order provides to farmers from North Dakota where I farm all the way to Florida and everywhere in between. This ruling potentially affects more than 50 million acres of dicamba-tolerant soybeans and cotton—an area larger than the state of Nebraska—so again, we are very appreciative of EPA’s decision to let us get through the 2024 growing season by using any product already in the delivery pipeline.”

EPA has declared farmers can accept “existing stocks”—previously registered pesticide products currently in the United States that were packaged, labeled, and released for shipment prior to February 6 (the effective date of the District of Arizona’s vacatur of dicamba registrations). The existing stocks order also clarified that dicamba product already in the possession of distributors, co-ops, and other parties for sale before that date can be sold and distributed, within set guidelines outlined in the order.

ASA is the national advocacy organization for the industry and led a letter to EPA last week signed by 26 soy state affiliates asking the administration for help following a dicamba ruling in a federal district court in Arizona. The court ruled EPA made a procedural error in issuing 2020 dicamba registrations for over-the-top (OTT) use on dicamba-tolerant soybeans and cotton. Because EPA did not offer a public notice and comment period before issuing the registrations, the court ruled the agency was in violation of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act and vacated 2020 registrations for XtendiMax, Enginia, and Tavium.

FIFRA gives EPA the authority to issue existing stocks orders for products that are cancelled, which is now a major priority for the soybean industry. ASA also asks for the administration’s support of an appeal of the ruling and help in seeking to stay the ruling from taking effect pending appeal.

In 2023, ASA, its 26 state soy affiliates, and several cotton associations submitted an amicus brief to the District Court of Arizona in this case urging the judge to avoid vacatur.

NCC Applauds EPA Existing-Stocks Order

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – The National Cotton Council appreciates the timely action by EPA to issue an existing-stocks order to give producers better clarity for the planting season already underway. We commend them for recognizing that growers had already committed to the seeds and crop protection products for the coming year, and no viable alternatives would have been available to meet the needs of U.S. producers. Under the circumstances, EPA’s order will provide much-needed relief for growers already facing difficult economic conditions.

Statement of NCFC President Chuck Conner on U.S. E.P.A.Existing Stock Order on Dicamba Products

Washington, D.C. (February 14, 2024)—”I would like to express our appreciation for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s action today in issuing an existing stock order for dicamba products whose registration was vacated last week by a federal court in Arizona. By moving quickly and allowing use of product already in the supply chain, EPA is providing some level of certainty for cotton and soybean producers across the country. NCFC and its members will continue to analyze the order in the coming days and we look forward to engaging further with EPA on questions we have on specifics.”

State agriculture officials commend EPA for issuing order on dicamba

NASDA CEO Ted McKinney issued a statement today following the EPA’s order on the use of existing stocks of the herbicide dicamba.

“As co-regulatory partners with EPA committed to preserving environmental stewardship, protecting the rural economy and securing a healthy food supply chain, NASDA commends EPA on issuing an existing stocks order for dicamba that is inclusive of products that are in the possession of growers or in the channels of trade. Today’s action will prevent severe detrimental impacts to our food, fuel and fiber availability.” NASDA CEO Ted McKinney

Last week at the organization’s Winter Policy Conference, NASDA members passed an action item encouraging EPA to immediately use all available discretion regarding existing stocks to ensure channels of trade are not disrupted in light of the Feb. 6, 2024 U.S. District Court of Arizona decision on dicamba.

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