Tarnished plant bug.
Tarnished plant bug.

Transform WG insecticide, a key insecticide in cotton growers’ battle against invading tarnished plant bugs, is back in the arsenal of growers in five states.

Dow AgroSciences announced that, in response to requests from multiple states, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has granted Section 18 emergency use exemptions in Arkansas, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi and Tennessee for the application of Transform for control of plant bugs in cotton.

Transform has been the foundation of many cotton growers’ pest management programs because the insecticide provides effective control of tarnished plant bugs and cotton aphids, and doesn’t flare spider mite populations.

“Tarnished plant bug represents a real threat to cotton producers in the Midsouth,” says Gus Lorenz, Arkansas Extension entomologist. “Since its introduction, Transform has reduced overall tarnished plant bug applications and provided significant yield increases and return in gross revenues. Transform has been used on more than 3 million acres across the Midsouth region with zero reported incidents of adverse effects on bees or other pollinators.”

Transform WG insecticide was federally registered in 2013 for use in cotton, but that registration was vacated as a result of an order by the U.S. 9th Circuit Court, in response to activist litigation. Now, with the recently approved Section 18s, producers in the listed states can use Transform to control tarnished plant bug populations in the 2016 season.

“Documentation of plant bugs resistant to multiple insecticides created extreme concern that, without Transform, producers would not have sufficient modes of action to manage damaging plant bug populations,” says Jeff Gore, Mississippi Research and Extension entomologist. “We are grateful that growers in Mississippi have this tool back in their arsenal this season.”