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Federal Court Blocks Use of Certain Dicamba for In-Crop Applications Stating EPA Violated FIFRA In Approving New Formulations

The Ninth Circuit Federal Court of Appeals issued a decision Wednesday, June 3rd, that would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to vacate its registrations for three dicamba herbicides - XtendiMax (Bayer), Engenia (BASF), and FeXapan (Corteva). The ruling does not appear to apply to Syngenta's Tavium, which is another newer formulation of dicamba that was registered following the previous three. While Arkansas regulations already prohibit use of dicamba for in-crop after May 25th, such applications of the three aforementioned products potentially would not be permitted nationwide under federal law according to this ruling. The ruling is likely to be appealed, but it's not clear if or when any decision would be made in relation to the decision. The EPA stated that it was reviewing the decision and would move promptly to address the court's directive.

According to a DTN Progressive Farmer news reports linked below Bayer stated "If the ruling stands, we will work quickly to minimize any impact on our customers this season. Our top priority is making sure our customers have the support they need to have a successful season." Bayer also stated its intent to appeal the ruling with hopes of muting its effect on farmers this growing season. It's estimated that 60 million acres of dicamba tolerant soybeans and cotton to be planted this year.

The Ninth Circuit's decision was made in relation to a lawsuit brought against the EPA and Monsanto back in 2017, which claimed that EPA violated the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) as well as the Endangered Species Act (ESA). The court determined a violation of FIFRA, but did not rule on a violation of the ESA.

Late Thursday, USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue issued the following statement regarding the ruling:

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