Potato industry must prepare to work without Mancozeb fungicide

There is little hope for sustained use of multisite fungicide Mancozeb beyond the 2023 growing season and UK potato growers are urged to start planning how they will effectively manage disease and fungicide resistance without it.

Late last year, there was a chance that if the EU hadn’t passed the recommended withdrawal of mancozeb into law by end of the Brexit transition period, British growers would gain a reprieve for the well-known fungicide. And that is exactly what happened on 1 January, when some pesticides under review by the EU were automatically given a three-year approval extension.

This is to allow Great Britain’s now independent pesticides regulatory system to scrutinise each active, including Mancozeb, and technically makes it available to GB growers up to 31 January 2024.

Any application for renewal beyond that date must be submitted to the chemicals regulation division (CRD) of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) three years before the new expiry date.

The European Food Safety Authority has classified the multisite as both an endocrine disruptor and harmful to reproduction. Also on its list of issues is a high risk to birds and mammals, non-target arthropods and soil macro-organisms.

Source: fwi.co.uk