* Since the Illinois State kicks off today, I figured we’d do an agriculture post. I’ve written about this topic before (click here). From an article in Successful Farming…
University weed scientists estimate at least 1.2% of U.S. soybean plantings have been damaged accidentally by the weedkiller dicamba despite stricter limits on its use this year, said a University of Missouri report. Damage was highest in Illinois, the No. 1 soybean-growing state, where 500,000 acres of the U.S. total of 1.1 million damaged acres are located.
The damage is way down across the country, but we’re now number one.
* Farm Week…
The number of dicamba-related complaints reported to the Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) is on the rise in the second year the herbicide is approved for use on tolerant soybeans, according to Jean Payne, president of Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association.
“We still are going to go over 300 formal complaints,” Payne told the RFD Radio Network®, referring to grievances that specifically allege dicamba damage. “And those 300 complaints that have been logged at the Illinois Department of Agriculture have taken our total pesticide-misuse complaints up over 450.”
Last year, IDOA fielded 430 total pesticide-misuse complaints, including 246 related to dicamba. Prior to 2017, the quantity of misuse complaints typically numbered between 100 and 120, Payne said.
“We saw widespread symptomology, and we can’t deny that it was there this year,” she said.
As if soybean farmers don’t have enough to deal with on the China trade fight.
* Modern Farmer…
For some background: dicamba is not a particularly new pesticide, but Monsanto has recently made a huge push with new dicamba-resistant soybean seeds to go along with the pesticide. Unfortunately, the pesticide has a tendency to drift, sometimes miles away, and the areas it hits are not always treated to be resistant. In that case, dicamba shrivels and kills plants—millions of acres of soybean fields have been affected.
But dicamba’s effects on plants are not limited to soybeans. Reports last year indicated that dicamba was killing mature oak trees in Iowa, Illinois, and Tennessee. But Unglesbee’s feature goes further, interviewing many farmers, gardeners, and even hotel owners whose farms, forests, lakes, and fields have been hurt. They include a South Dakota farmer who grows hundreds of varieties of fruits and vegetables for a CSA and estimated he’s lost $11,000 due to dicamba; an Illinois homeowner whose garden was destroyed; and a Tennessee resort owner whose attempts to plant young trees and a small garden for his restaurant were foiled by dicamba.
* WSIL TV…
Cupped up soybeans are one of the clearest indicators of dicamba exposure on beans not modified for the chemical.
“We’ve been drifted on and had about 65 acres of beans effected by volatility this year because neighbors used it,” said farmer Kelly Robertson.
* Illinois Newsroom…
Farmers in a federal class-action lawsuit filed two main complaints this week against agro-chemical giants Monsanto and BASF regarding the herbicide dicamba, which is blamed for millions of acres of crop damage, especially to soybeans, over the last couple years.
The “master complaints,” filed in a U.S. district court in St. Louis, consolidate 11 complaints from farmers from Arkansas to South Dakota.
The lawsuit alleges Monsanto and BASF created dicamba-resistant crops knowing it would likely cause harm to other fields. It states that the companies not only knew about the risk, “but everything they did and failed to do increased that risk.” […]
The second complaint alleges that Monsanto is creating a monopoly off of dicamba-resistant plants.