New treatment to replace Lindane

8 June 2001

New treatment to replace Lindane

By Tom Allen-Stevens

A NEW oilseed dressing which manufacturers hope will fill the gap left by banned pesticide Lindane has been granted approval.

Bayers Chinook, which protects the emerging crop from damage by flea beetle, was approved on Thursday (07 June).

Chinook will be available to growers of winter oilseed rape this autumn, but Bayer is not allowing its use by mobile seed treatment plants.

The active ingredients are imidacloprid (Gaucho in sugar beet and Secur in cereals) and betacyfluthrin, the active isomer from a cyfluthrin pyrethroid spray.

“Its a big step forward. The departure of Lindane left a hole in the market, and everyone has been looking for a replacement,” said ADAS agronomist David Green.

Widely used organochlorine Lindane lost its approval two years ago due to questions over operator safety.

“Chinook should give protection from damage by adult flea beetles, from before the crop emerges, to two-to-four full leaves emerged,” said Bayers Tim Nicholson.

It will also offer limited protection against the flea-beetle larvae, he adds.

Adult flea beetles attack the emerging cotyledon, causing “horrendous” damage to the young crop, said Mr Nicholson.

The larvae can be equally damaging as they mine through the petiole and damage the growing point in the main stem, which can seriously affect yield.

Jim Carswell, trials and technical manager with Fishers Seeds, has been trying the new dressing out for the past two years at two sites in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire.

“On both sites we found there was a significant reduction in flea-beetle damage in the treated plots,” he said.

On the Yorkshire site in 1999, establishment on the protected plots was two-and-a-half times better than the untreated, although yield was only 14% improved.

Chinooks restriction to fixed seed treatment plants only is down to its formulation – it passed operator safety tests “with flying colours”, insists Bayer.

The formulation contains talcum powder. A high degree of skill and close control is needed to dress it, the company adds.

Bill Eaton, of mobile seed dressers CYO Seeds, advises growers using farm-saved seed to bag it up and bring it in to CYO open days.

The company has an approved fixed plant where the dressing can take place while you wait.


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