Equipment/Technology

Lifting of maleic hydrazide label restrictions in Britain positive for potato sprout suppression

Following the lifting of label restrictions on maleic hydrazide (MH), the active can be used for control of potato volunteers and sprout suppression during storage.

Mark Taylor of the Fresh Potatoes Suppliers Association (FPSA) says: “Since the announcement of the non-renewal of chlorpropham (CIPC), having a restriction on the use of maleic hydrazide-treated crops had an even greater impact for growers and packers.

“By working together, we have achieved an extremely positive outcome, for which many will breathe a sigh of relief.”

Stewardship group member and head of crop storage research at AHDB, Adrian Cunnington says: “MH is an important active for volunteer control and, particularly in the current environment, for sprout control as part of an integrated programme.

“We are pleased that the industry has been able to work with CRD, via stewardship, to reach this important and sensible decision.”

In a survey for the review, which yielded 51 responses, 78 per cent of users said they apply MH for sprout suppression compared with 66 per cent for volunteer control. Ninety-five per cent of respondents applied MH when the foliage was more than 75 per cent green and over half did so when the canopy was fully green.

Read the full report in Farmers Guardian here