On June 24, 2011, EPA approved, for emergency use, the insecticide dinotefuran (trade names Venom and Scorpion) on tree fruit to help manage populations of the brown marmorated stink bug, an invasive insect that has caused extensive yield losses in tree fruit production in the mid-Atlantic region. The approval, known as an emergency exemption, applies to Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, North Carolina and New Jersey. Under the exemption, producers of stone fruit (such as peaches, plums and cherries) and pome fruit (including apples and pears) are allowed to manage the brown marmorated stink bug with two applications of dinotefuran by ground equipment per season.
“EPA is very concerned about the impact of stink bugs on agricultural production and will continue to monitor the problem and provide growers safe and effective tools to help manage this pest,” said Steve Owens, assistant administrator of EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention. "We are committed to continuing to work closely with the agricultural community to address this very serious problem."
Under the emergency exemption provision of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, states can petition EPA for the use of an unregistered pesticide on a temporary basis if it will help alleviate an emergency pest problem. Before approval, EPA must be able to support the use from a health and safety standpoint. EPA has assessed the risks of the exemption involving dinotefuran and finds that it meets the current safety standards. Dinotefuran is already approved for use on leafy vegetables, cotton, grapes, potatoes and a variety of other crops.
Also, on June 21, 2011, EPA approved an additional use for an insecticide that may help manage stink bugs in organic production systems. The new product contains azadirachtin and pyrethrins, which are derived from botanical ingredients. This product is now approved for use on many crops where stink bug management is needed, and it can be used by organic farmers.
EPA continues to work with Congress, USDA, lead state agencies, various federal research agencies, universities, private companies and growers, in an effort to develop a sustainable pest-management tool box to manage brown marmorated stink bugs.
For more information: http://www.epa.gov/pesticides/controlling/stinkbugs
More information about EPA’s work with the agriculture community: http://www.epa.gov/agriculture/