Archives – November, 2013

Neonics: “There are sure two sides to this story — with only one being told.”

Editor’s Note: The article below, written by a former associate dean for research and innovation in the Ontario Agricultural College at University of Guelph contains two quotes in particular that should serve as a stark warning to regulatory officials contemplating a ban on neonicotinoids:

  1. In France, the number of bee colonies dropped by 25% after a neonic ban was imposed in 1999.”
  2. In Ontario, “bee colony numbers are increasing, climbing almost 50%…since neonic seed treatments were introduced in 2004.”

From: London Free Press/Opinion

Proposed insecticide ban buzzes industry

Terry Daynard, Special to QMI Agency

Leave a Comment November 28, 2013

‘Wildlife at risk’ from incoming ban on pesticide linked to bee deaths

Editor’s Note: Advocates of neonic bans are ignoring the strong environmental safety benefits of seed treatment which reduces pestcide application by an order of magnitude, see here.

From: The Guardian

Farmers and beekeepers warn that crop-growers may turn to older pesticides when EU ban on neonicotinoids begins

Mark Riley Cardwell

Wildlife could be at risk from an imminent ban on pesticides linked to bee deaths, farmers and beekeepers have warned.

Leave a Comment November 27, 2013

Grain Farmers Urged To Speak Up About Seed Treatment



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Ontario grain farmers are being told they need to get their voices heard on the neo-nic seed treatment issue.

The Pest Management Review Agency is looking at the use of neo-nics because of their possible link to bee deaths.

Grain Farmers of Ontario says the PMRA has received thousands of submissions calling for the banning of neo-nics.

CEO Barry Senft says many of those were probably prompted by the Sierra Club campaign against the treatments. He argues most of those submissions have come from people with a lot less at stake in the issue than farmers have.

Leave a Comment November 25, 2013

National Farmers Union backs Syngenta’s EU neonic legal challenge

Editor’s Note:  The Statement by the National Farmers Union (NFU) in support of Syngenta may be found here

From: Farmers Weekly

The NFU is to intervene in support of Syngenta’s legal bid to reverse a ban on neonicotinoid pesticides linked to a decline in bee health.

NFU president Peter Kendall confirmed: “We will support Syngenta’s legal challenge of the European Commission’s hasty restrictions on certain neonicotinoids, including thiamethoxam, distributed by Syngenta as Cruiser. We are planning direct intervention in the case.”

Leave a Comment November 22, 2013

Syngenta “This study shows that risk to bees is much lower in the field, than under artificial conditions used in laboratory studies – some of which exaggerated the doses.”

 Editor’s  Note:  The Syngenta  Study will be highlighted in CRE’s  forthcoming submission to Health Canada. 

The author’s conclude:

“We conclude that these data demonstrate there is a low risk to honey bees from systemic residues in nectar and pollen following the use of thiamethoxam as a seed treatment on oilseed rape and maize.”

The complete study is on the following  link PLOS One Syngenta

The study states:

1 Comment November 20, 2013

Bayer tests new seed treatments to protect honeybees

From: The Grower

Vicky Boyd

Bayer CropScience has successfully completed field trials of a new seed treatment technology that significantly reduces dust compared to traditional seed treatments.

That’s important because pesticide-laden dust from seed treatments is suspected to contribute to honeybee population declines, according to a news release.

The treatment, which is used on field crops such as corn, uses a polyethylene wax substrate. Traditional seed treatment uses talc and graphite lubricants. It acts as a carrier for pesticides, such as neonicotinoids, used to control soilborne seed pests.

Leave a Comment November 20, 2013

Studies show neonics ‘not linked to bee deaths’

From: Farmer’s Weekly

Comprehensive field studies carried out by Syngenta have found no evidence linking neonicotinoid seed treatments to poor bee health.

Restrictions on the use of three neonicotinoid pesticides on bee-attractive crops, including Syngenta’s thiamethoxam (Cruiser), will come into force across the EU from 1 December.

The European Commission pushed through a two-year ban on neonicotinoids despite a split among EU countries.

The action was in response to the European Food Safety Authority’s (EFSA) scientific opinion that these insecticides posed an unacceptable risk to bees.

Leave a Comment November 18, 2013

Monsanto Fights Bee Disappearance

Editor’s Note: The article below describes the actions underway by a leading US corporation to preserve a viable national stock of bees. Until which time the products of this major commitment to research and development are available it is imperative that regulators not act prematurely.

 A preponderance of evidence demonstrates that the varroa mite is the major destructor of bees and we encourage regulators to take the appropriate action.  CRE is concerned however that a number of advocates are recommending regulatory action be initiated as a result of the chemical treatment of seeds, “seed treatment”.  Consequently CRE will be examining seed treatment in considerable detail.

Leave a Comment November 16, 2013

“the idea that seed treatment pesticides are causing colony collapse disorder…is false.”

Editor’s  Note:   The attention being given to seed treatment as a major cause of bee health decline will be addressed in CRE’s  forthcoming submission to Health Canada.

My Way of Thinking: Seed treatments overblamed for bee deaths

Richard Keller, Editor, Ag Professional

It is hard to ignore consumer media reporting on the activist organizations’ claims that pesticides are killing all the bees in the U.S. and world. The overzealous reporting makes it sound like all the crops grown for food are dependent on bees to be pollinated, which is far from the truth. The 90 percent of consumers that have no idea about farming and crop production are easily coerced into believing most anything.

Leave a Comment November 16, 2013

Canadian industry seeks broader approach to bee problem

From: Food Chemical News

The Canadian industry association, CropLife Canada, has urged the government to broaden its examination of the challenges affecting bee populations beyond neonicotinoid insecticides. Despite widespread international agreement that bee health is impacted by a combination of factors, the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) continues to focus exclusively on the role of neonicotinoids in one specific Canadian region, the industry body points out, Agrow reports.

Leave a Comment November 15, 2013

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