State Rep. Blaine Wilhour co-signed a letter to the governor this week to request an extension by the Illinois Department of Agriculture (IDOA) on the use of dicamba application.
Dicamba is a chemical product used by Illinois farmers to fight weeds that could take over their crops. The U.S. Court of Appeals ruled dicamba illegal for use as of June 3, 2020, which was seventeen days ahead of the deadline for farmers to apply the in Illinois.
“I am pleased that the farmers who have invested in these products to help bring in a productive crop this year will be able to use the chemicals that were legal up until last week. If they had to dispose of these chemicals and purchase different pesticides, that would add another insurmountable financial strain on our industry that many farmers could not handle,” commented Rep. Wilhour (R-Beecher City).
Before the ruling was made by the U.S. Court of Appeals, the Illinois Department of Agriculture allowed the use of dicamba until June 20, 2020 but now farmers are permitted to use these products up until June 25, 2020.
The letter to the governor pointed out that the last couple of years have been rough for farmers dealing with trade wars, low crop prices, and low production, and that this restriction of use after it was already paid for, placed a serious burden on the number one Illinois industry when there are few reliable alternatives at this time. Thousands of farmers choose to use dicamba products to ensure their crop obtains a high yield. The product has been utilized by farmers for over 50 years and is one of several tools used by many farmers today.
Use of existing stocks of these products must be consistent with the previously-approved labeling. All conditions of IDOA’s registrations under section 24(c) of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) remain in effect, including the prohibition of applications when the forecasted temperature exceeds 85 degrees. However, the June 20, 2020 application cutoff date has been extended to June 25, 2020.
For those who would like to know more, the final cancellation order can be found here.