Cotton and Sorghum: Transform WG Insecticide Gets Section 18 Emergency Use Exemptions

    Tarnished plant bug up close. Photo: Mississippi State University

    Dow AgroSciences has received Section 18 emergency use exemptions from EPA for Transform WG insecticide in select states for the 2017 production season. The Section 18 emergency use exemptions come as welcome news to cotton and sorghum growers.

    States receiving a Section 18 exemption in cotton include: Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Tennessee and Texas. States receiving a Section 18 exemption in sorghum include: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Kansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas and Virginia.

    During the previous 4 years, Transform has proven to be an effective weapon in the battle cotton growers wage annually against tarnished plant bug. Mississippi grower Mike Sturdivant has come to rely on Transform to control the relentless invasion of plant bug in his cotton fields.

    Plant bug is no longer considered a ‘secondary pest’ in the Mississippi Delta,” says Sturdivant. “Plant bug presents a major threat to our cotton fields. We first tried Transform in 2012 because of a dwindling arsenal of available products to effectively control plant bug. There are so many advantages to using Transform. Not only do we get great control, but we also benefit from the longer residual Transform offers, which means we aren’t spraying nearly as often.”

    Sturdivant is a fifth-generation Mississippi grower who, with his two brothers, operates Due West Farms, a 12,000-acre cotton, corn and soybean operation near Glendora, Mississippi. Mike and his brothers are profoundly conscientious about insecticide resistance and overuse of the same chemistries.

    “Transform is a critical tool for us in our efforts to minimize insecticide resistance,” Sturdivant says. “We never rely on only one product. We are diligent about alternating chemistries, and without Transform, it would be next to impossible to effectively manage insecticide resistance. Without this option, we would be much closer to confronting huge resistance issues.”

    The Section 18 emergency use exemptions are also welcome news to Angus Catchot, Extension entomologist, Mississippi State University.

    “Over the years, we’ve noticed traditional insecticides, including neonicotinoids and pyrethroids, have declined in efficacy,” says Catchot. “When Transform became available, Midsouth cotton growers finally had a new chemistry they could rely on to effectively control plant bug. Back-to-back applications of Transform, both pre- and post-bloom, are very effective and Transform doesn’t flare pests such as spider mites.”

    “Since its introduction, Transform has effectively reduced overall plant bug populations while providing significant yield increases. It is a product cotton producers need and we are glad to have it back for the 2017 season.”

    Sugarcane aphid continues infiltration into sorghum fields

    Sugarcane aphid first appeared in sorghum in 2013, mostly in Texas and Louisiana. However, in recent years, sugarcane aphid has continued to move farther north and west into other states. The sap-feeding pest consumes sorghum leaves, causing the foliage to turn purple and yellow, and ultimately reduce yield. Sugarcane aphid also produces a sticky honeydew substance, creating reduced harvest efficiency and clogged combines.

    “The proliferation of sugarcane aphid happens very quickly, so it is critical for growers to scout early and often,” says Robert Bowling, AgriLife Extension entomology specialist at Texas A&M. “Applying Transform early minimizes populations and diminishes the rate by which sugarcane aphid multiplies. Because of a unique chemistry, Transform insecticide provides growers with an effective resistance management tool.”

    “We are grateful that EPA has approved the Section 18 emergency use exemptions for both crops,” says Phil Jost, Dow AgroSciences portfolio marketing leader, U.S. Crop Protection Insecticides. “The action demonstrates that EPA has listened to growers, consultants and university Extension experts and now recognizes the most valuable role Transform plays in effectively controlling these devastating pests.”

    “We join with our customers and independent third-party supporters in applauding EPA for granting the emergency use exemptions. All stakeholders are breathing a collective sigh of relief as we gear up for the 2017 crop production year,” adds Jost.

    To hear from growers and consultants about their experience battling tarnished plant bug in cotton and sugarcane aphid in sorghum with Transform WG insecticide, visit Visit with your local Dow AgroSciences sales representative or field scientist to learn more about application recommendations in your area.

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