Turn Pest Practices into Best Practices

With summer heat blasting at full tilt, farmers across the country are racing towards harvest. Out in the fields, many farmers and crop advisors are scouting to determine what weeds, diseases or insects may threaten their crop during the next few months.

Now is the time for a discussion on pesticide stewardship to ensure actions taken this season won’t negatively affect next season.

Sponsored by the industry-wide Take Action initiative and the soy checkoff, PEST (Pest Elimination Strategies and Tactics) Week brings to the forefront product stewardship practices that help prevent resistance development and ensure herbicides, fungicides and insecticides remain viable for years to come.

“For more than five years, the Take Action program has been a go-to resource for farmers to help us all make decisions about the crop protection products used on our farmers,” says Meagan Kaiser, Missouri farmer and United Soybean Board farmer-leader. “PEST Week is a chance for us to really make an impact with the whole industry on the need to have product stewardship strategy that keeps these products effective for years.”

Resistant weeds have impacted fields around the country for years, and disease and insect resistance development is an increasing possibility. PEST Week challenges farmers to look beyond assumptions to help ensure the most effective tools are available for years to come.

“The industry is a critical juncture in managing resistance to herbicides, as well as other products,” says Larry Steckel, Row Crop Weed Management Professor at the University of Tennessee. “New pesticides are being developed and registered for use at a much slower pace than in the past. Because of this, it is becoming more and more important to actively delay the development of resistance to herbicides and other pesticides currently in our “toolbox.” This is why implementing management strategies — like rotating modes of action, using the full labeled rate and incorporating cultural practices — is crucial.”

The Take Action App, now available in the Apple App Store or Google Play Store, offers a wealth of resources on resistance management, including the popular Herbicide Site of Action Lookup Tool. Other resources available from Take Action include:

  • Keep weeds out of fields and fight herbicide resistance with the Ultimate Weed Management Checklist, covering every best management practice to slow herbicide resistance development.
  • Herbicide labels differ from state to state, as emphasized with dicamba post-emergence application restrictions. Stay on top of the required recordkeeping paperwork with the Take Action pesticide application record. The fillable PDF can save records electronically or print easily as a one-page document.
  • Many popular weed management resources have also been updated for 2018, including the Take Action Herbicide Classification Chart, Herbicide Classification Guide, and thirteen weed management fact sheets.
  • Take Action also offers several resources related to fungicide management, including the popular Fungicide Classification Chart, Fungicide Efficacy Fact Sheet, and Know Your Risk soybean disease evaluation tool.

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About Take Action
Take Action is a farmer-focused education platform designed to help farmers manage herbicide, fungicide and insecticide resistance. The goal is to encourage farmers to adopt management practices that lessen the impacts of resistant pests and preserve current and future crop protection technology. Take Action started with industry-wide collaborative discussions about the growing threat of herbicide resistant weeds. Parties included representatives from major ag chemical companies, land-grant university weed scientists and soy, corn, cotton, sorghum and wheat commodity groups. For more information on Take Action, visit www.IWillTakeAction.com

About the United Soybean Board
USB’s 73 farmer-directors work on behalf of all U.S. soybean farmers to achieve maximum value for their soy checkoff investments. These volunteers invest and leverage checkoff funds in programs and partnerships to drive soybean innovation beyond the bushel and increase preference for U.S. soy. That preference is based on U.S. soybean meal and oil quality and the sustainability of U.S. soybean farmers. As stipulated in the federal Soybean Promotion, Research and Consumer Information Act, the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service has oversight responsibilities for USB and the soy checkoff. For more information on the United Soybean Board, visit www.unitedsoybean.org

This blog post is brought to you by the South Dakota Soybean Research & Promotion Council.