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EU: Major potato desiccant diquat now set to be banned

Farmers Weekly in the UK reports that major potato desiccant diquat is set to be banned due to concerns related to the exposure of bystanders and residents and also its effect on bird life, with growers only likely to have at most one more season’s use of the product.

Most potato crops are desiccated, usually with diquat – which is contained in products such as Reglone – to cut the risk of foliar diseases getting into potato tubers and also to stop bulking when tubers reach the desired marketable size.

The European Commission is proposing that diquat is withdrawn from the market by 4 May 2019, with a use-up period for growers up to 4 February 2020.

Syngenta, the maker of Reglone, reportedly said it had fought hard to defend diquat and maintained its withdrawal was not justified.

Read the Farmers Weekly news story