Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association
Supply · Service · Stewardship

Dicamba Update - IDA Receiving Many Calls

In the last week, the Illinois Department of Agriculture staff has been fielding 40-50 calls a day regarding pesticide misuse, mostly attributed to symptoms in soybeans.  As of today (June 22, 2018) there are 25 formal misuse complaints filed alleging dicamba misuse, and the IDA has sent out dozens of complaint forms for those who are calling in, but who have not yet submitted a signed complaint.  So far, most cases are related to symptoms in soybeans but there are several cases related to injury to trees.  IDA has to complete a full investigation before much can be said about the extent or cause of the alleged misuse.  We've gotten our share of calls at the IFCA office as well, from our retail members and also from farmers.  
Yesterday the University of Missouri issued a bulletin regarding dicamba issues in their state.  Click here for the bulletin.  The U-MO bulletin estimates acres of soybeans and cotton with symptoms in several states (including Illinois) as well as initial reports from several state departments of agriculture.  The bulletin also discusses impact on crops and plants other than soybeans and cotton.
People have asked what the USEPA will use as the criteria to determine if the dicamba labels will be re-authorized after they expire at the end of 2018.  Is it simply the number of complaints filed?  USEPA has not indicated that there will be any one factor that will determine the future of these products, it could be a combination of factors.  They also indicated they could make a decision prior to the labels expiring (such as by the end of August) in order to avoid keeping the industry in limbo as people plan for the 2019 crop season.  

IFCA will continue to keep you posted.  We appreciate the input from our members on what you are experiencing in your areas of the state and your perspective as a commercial applicator on the situation this year.