Azinphos-methyl phase-out update

Distribution of Azinphos-methyl (AZM), also known as Guthion, is prohibited after September 30, 2012, but product use is extended until 2013.

Many have heard that azinphos-methyl (AZM), commonly known as Guthion, is due to be phased out September 30, 2012, and earlier this season you were encouraged to use up any remaining supplies by that date. Work has been afoot by apple industry leaders to maintain AZM uses as it is now.

On behalf of the Michigan Apple Industry, MACMA and the Michigan Apple Committee, with the help of Michigan State University researcher Larry Gut, submitted a rebuttal letter to EPA addressing concerns regarding the September 30, 2012, phase-out of AZM. Michigan’s Apple Industry is of the belief the total phase-out of AZM would not only disrupt current integrated pest management (IPM) practices and increase financial loss to producers, but also impact markets.

EPA held a conference call with stakeholders on August 30, 2012, and announced the following:

“…As a result of this year’s abnormal weather events, growers have been left with unused stocks that cannot be used unless EPA modifies the existing cancellation order to permit additional use of the existing stocks in growers’ possession. EPA believes it is appropriate to allow growers to use the remaining stocks in their possession – for another use season – through September 30, 2013 – and therefore is today modifying the existing cancellation order to permit growers to use stocks in their possession for another year.

For the reasons explained above, EPA hereby modifies the cancellation order of February 20, 2008, to permit use of AZM products until September 30, 2013. The distribution and sale provisions remain unchanged and therefore any distribution or sale of AZM products is prohibited after September 30, 2012 …”

Growers are urged to assess their existing inventories immediately and contact their spray consultant if they have excess. No transfers can take place after September 30, 2012.

You can read the above decision in its entirety at Azinphos-methyl: Notice of Receipt of Request for Label Amendments, as well as read the EPA news release.

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