Information Requests Monitoring System

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Request ID: 168
Request From: Steve Toth
Date Requested: Feb 13, 2007
Request: Note the following request for information/contacts persons regarding soil fumigation in orchard establishment. Please send me any information or the names of any possible contact persons in your respective states/territories as soon as possible. Thanks. Steve Toth ---------------------------------------------- Dear Mr. Toth, I'm contacting you in your capacity as Director of the Southern IPM Center. As you may know, EPA is assessing the risks and benefits of several soil fumigants (methyl bromide, metam sodium, metam potassium, dazomet, and chloropicrin) as part of the Reregistration Program. My division is responsible for characterizing and, if possible, quantifying the benefits of the use of soil fumigants. At the moment, my colleague Len Yourman and I are examining their use in establishing (or re-establishing) orchards and vineyards. Through our minor crops program, we've identified several contacts and are planning to get in touch with them soon. We'd also like to ask if the IPM centers have any information or can suggest other people or organizations for us to contact. We are working on a number of crops, however, so I also want to alert you that there may be similar requests regarding other crops coming in the weeks ahead. As part of our preliminary assessment, we are trying to determine the extent of use of soil fumigation in orchard establishment. We have reasonably good data on acres treated and rates used in California, but public and available proprietary data for other regions of the country are very sparse. We see in the crop profiles and pest management plans that fumigation is recommended, but we don't know to what extent it is actually practiced. As I said, data makes use appear very limited. This may be because the acres treated are a small percentage of total acres grown. However, treatment might be a substantial proportion of acres planted. We've been able to find some relatively recent fruit inventories published by USDA, which help to estimate plantings, but we are looking for usage information. We're also looking for any information on target pests and whether there are specific factors that lead growers to prefer one fumigant over the others. Eventually, we'd like to determine what alternatives, both chemical and non-chemical, are available to address these pests and what consequences might be expected if growers relied up these alternatives. The contacts we've identified include Ray Prewett, at Texas Citrus Mutual Dan Botts, Florida Fruit and Vegetable Association Dan Horton, University of Georgia Larry Davenport, at the National Pecan Shellers Association Again, if the IPM Center has any information, or can steer us to other people, organizations or data sources, regarding this issue, we'd greatly appreciate it. Thanks! Sincerely, T J Wyatt Biological and Economic Analysis Division Office of Pesticide Programs U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (703)308-7228

Responses
Responder: Mark Mossler
State: FL
Date Requested: Mar 02, 2007
Response: I have checked with the vineyard industry (approximately a dozen in the state), stonefruit people (about 400 acres), pecan, and the citrus industry. Grape and stonefruit crops are raised on nematode-resistant root stock, and as these are both fledgling industries, they have never practiced fumigation, nor have pecan growers. At one time, citrus growers may have fumigated replanting holes or fumigated for establishment, but this is no longer practiced nor recommended in Extension publications. Growers have come to realize that fumigating any type of perennial crop just does not make economic sense. Florida's use for fumigants for outdoor production centers around annual crops such as vegetables and fruits.

Responder: Mark Mossler
State: PR
Date Requested: Mar 02, 2007
Not Important/Relevant to my state(s)
Response: See response from FL.

Responder: Mark Mossler
State: VI
Date Requested: Mar 02, 2007
Response: Response from the VI is the same as comments from FL.

Responder: Steve Bost
State: TN
Date Requested: Mar 07, 2007
Not Important/Relevant to my state(s)
Response:

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