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CANADIAN FARMERS REQUIRED TO USE BAYER CROPSCIENCE'S FLUENCY AGENT
Seed World reports:

During the 2014 planting season, corn and soybean farmers will be required by Canada's Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) to apply Bayer CropScience's Fluency Agent to seed treated with neonicotinoid insecticides, such as clothianidin, thiamethoxam and imidacloprid.

Seed companies and local cooperatives will be the primary point of sale for the farmer-applied seed flow lubricant, explains Derrick Rozdeba, Bayer CropScience Marketing Communications manager in Calgary. The Fluency Agent reduces the dust released during planting and decreases the potential risk of exposure to pollinators.

PMRA encourages farmers to use best management practices outlined by Bayer CropScience. These include reading and adhering to the pesticide label and seed tag directions, practicing integrated pest management, developing and maintaining shared communication with beekeepers to help protect honeybees, recognizing pollinator habitat and taking special care to reduce dust exposure.

"Unlike with the talc power and graphite powder, less is more with the fluency agent," Rozdeba says, noting that it's extremely important to be precise in the measurements. As an application guideline, a 400-gram container of Fluency Agent treats 50 bags of seed or 125 acres of corn, and the suggested retail price is $23.99, according to Bayer CropScience.

"The introduction of Fluency Agent is our latest contribution to improve honey bee health in Canada," says Paul Thiel, Bayer CropScience vice president of Innovation and Public Affairs. "As a steward of Canadian agriculture, we have collaborated with growers, plant manufacturers, beekeepers and the government to introduce this product to help address the possible honey bee risk of exposure that can sometimes occur during planting season."

In the spring of 2013, Bayer CropScience conducted large-scale field studies with growers and major planter manufacturers, covering more than 40,000 acres of corn and soybeans in North America, including 13,000 acres in Ontario and Quebec.

"It's pretty simple really; easy to apply, a lot smaller quantity," says Ed Benjamins, an Ontario farmer who participated in one of the Fluency Agent studies.


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