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EPA grants exemption for desiccant use on canola


The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has granted an emergency exemption to allow Kansas canola growers to use diquat dibromide as a pre-harvest treatment on as many as 50,000 acres of canola. ¬ 

Growers have until July 6, to apply the pre-harvest treatment, which is intended to allow a more timely harvest and planting of double-crop soybeans or grain sorghum.

Diquat dibromide, a desiccant, allows more canola seed to properly mature and for the plant material to properly dry, both of which contribute to higher quantities of higher quality seed to be harvested.

The Kansas Department of Agriculture asked for the exemption because unique weather conditions during the last year lead to developmental delays in canola plants. The canola-growing area received up to 180 percent of normal rainfall from April 7 to May 6. It was followed by cycles of rainfall, cool temperatures and high humidity, which can cause seeds to develop at different times and for seed moisture levels to remain high.¬  Yield losses occur when moisture levels are not optimum and seed pods drop and shatter if they are handled.

Canola is grown in Sumner, Harper, Barber, Kiowa, Kingman, Sedgwick, Butler, Reno, Stafford, Pawnee, Marion, McPherson, Barton, Saline, and Dickinson counties.

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