Update on status of Section 18 request for Kasumin

Editor’s note: This article is from the archives of the MSU Crop Advisory Team Alerts. Check the label of any pesticide referenced to ensure your use is included.

The Michigan Department of Agriculture in association with Dr. George Sundin submitted an application for a Section 18 specific exemption for the use of Kasumin (kasugamycin) in apple orchards in Michigan that are affected by the presence of streptomycin-resistant strains of the fire blight pathogen Erwinia amylovora. The counties listed on the Section 18 application are: Berrien, Cass, Ionia, Kent, Montcalm, Newaygo, Oceana, Ottawa, and Van Buren.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently opened a comment period for the public to submit comments concerning this Section 18 application. Comments can be uploaded to the website (www.regulations.gov). The Kasumin comment site is listed under Docket ID (EPA-HQ-OPP-2010-0179). The comment period ends April 15. We are optimistic that the EPA will issue its ruling soon after this date. A further update will be posted to the Fruit CAT Alert as soon as we know of the status of this Section 18.

One stipulation on the Section 18 label will be that an alternate antibiotic must be applied first during bloom prior to any applications of Kasumin. Thus, growers should be ready to apply oxytetracycline as their first antibiotic spray during bloom. If the Section 18 is granted, MSU Extension personnel will be monitoring for conditions conducive to fire blight infection and alerting growers as to when Kasumin can be applied.

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