Makers to fight for main OP& carbamate uses

29 January 1999




Makers to fight for main OP& carbamate uses

By Andrew Swallow

MOST mainline organophosphorus and carbamate compounds have cleared the first hurdle to continued use in the UK. But some niche market products, crucial for certain minority crops, will be phased out.

Chemical companies were required to notify the UK Pesticides Safety Directorate of their intention to support or drop active ingredients on the review list by Jan 18. If supported, data sets to meet the European directive 91/414 requirements must be submitted by Sept 18.

Thinsec (carbaryl), an apple fruit and foliage thinner, is one of the first fallers. "This will be a serious loss to apple growers," says Samantha Evans, regulatory manager for Zeneca which markets the product on behalf of Rhone Poulenc.

Purely commercial reasons are behind the decision rather than environmental or safety concerns, she stresses. "The UK market isnt big enough to justify the costs."

Manufacturer RP has applied to PSD for a revocation period to allow a gradual commercial withdrawal of the product. That should allow sales this season, and stocks to be used up for a further two, notes RP regulatory affairs manager Janet Williams.

"Hopefully by the time that runs out, we will have EU approval for the active and can get the product re-registered in the UK," she says.

Other major RP molecules, aldicarb (Temik 10G), ethoprophos (Mocap 10G), thiodicarb (Genesis) and ethephon (Cerone) will be fully supported, as will Actellic (pirimiphos-methyl) and Aphox (pirimicarb) from Zeneca and malathion and phorate from United Phosphorus.

BASF will support dimethoate and Dow Agrosciences will be defending the use of chlorpyrifos.

"A lot of companies are replacing OPs with pyrethroids anyway, but there are some markets such as wheat bulb fly, leatherjackets or cabbage root fly where they just dont work," says Dow insecticide specialist James Knight.

NFU pesticides specialist Chris Wise echoes these views and is concerned that UK growers will miss out on certain products still available to their EU counterparts.

"It is not remotely fair that British growers will have to do without certain products in the battle to produce the quality required by the supermarkets. And when it comes to anti-resistance strategies an OP may be the ultimate backstop for control."

"A classic example was Folimat (omethoate). For the control of narcissus fly it was unique, but for regulatory cost reasons Bayer dropped it in the UK, while it is still available in Europe.

"The question is whether the UK will allow dropped products back in if they pass the eventual EU review," he says.

That review was drawn up in the 1991 directive 414, and the first 90 products are still to be cleared. The UK review was launched due to domestic public pressure and the slow European progress.

OP & CARBAMATE REVIEW

&#8226 Main molecules supported by manufacturers.

&#8226 Some specialist, low volume products dropped eg Thinsec, Blex (pirimiphos-methyl), Cudgel (fonofos), Zolone liquid (phosalone).

&#8226 Unilateral UK action ahead of EU.

OP&CARBAMATEREVIEW

&#8226 Main molecules supported by manufacturers.

&#8226 Some specialist, low volume products dropped eg Thinsec, Blex (pirimiphos-methyl), Cudgel (fonofos), Zolone liquid (phosalone).

&#8226 Unilateral UK action ahead of EU.


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