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UK potato farmers pleased to see restrictions on Maleic Hydrazide lifted

UK potato farmers pleased to see restrictions on Maleic Hydrazide lifted

Maleic Hydrazide is applied to the potato crop while it is still growing in the field, unlike the sprout inhibitor CIPC, which is applied on the tubers in storage (Courtesy: Farmers Weekly)

August 1, 2019
In the United Kingdom, restrictions on the use of products containing Maleic Hydrazide (MH) - used to control volunteers and to suppress sprouting during potato storage - have been removed following a review by the Chemicals Regulation Division (CRD) of the HSE.

The now-lifted restrictions followed an amendment to labels in November and meant that potatoes and other crops treated with such products could not be fed to livestock in the UK.

The decision will be welcome news to growers and was made after additional data supplied by an industry stewardship group.

Maleic Hydrazide is the active substance in growth regulating products such as Itcan SL270, Crown MH, Fazor and Source II used for the control of volunteers and to suppress sprouting during storage. AHDB has recently completed a review of MH as a potato sprout suppressant.

(Click to access)

AHDB has recently completed a review of Maleic Hydrazine (MH) as a potato sprout suppressant. Click image to access

Adrian Cunnington, Stewardship group member and Head of Crop Storage Research at AHDB:

“Maleic hydrazine is an important active for volunteer control and, particularly in the current environment, for sprout control as part of an integrated programme.”

“We are pleased that the industry has been able to work with CRD, via stewardship, to reach this important and sensible decision.”

Products containing Maleic Hydrazine

Popular products containing MH available in the UK include:

  • Gemini Itcan SL270 MAPP number: 17957
  • Certis Crown MH MAPP number: 18018
  • UPL (Arysta) Fazor ‘Old label’ MAPP numbers: 13617 ‘New label’ MAPP number: 19074
  • Drexel Source II MAPP number: 17858
Other formulations are available. If your product is not listed you can check the HSE’s Pesticides
Register at https://secure.pesticides.gov.uk/pestreg/
Mike Storey, Technical Directorate at the AHDB:

“The CRD has concluded that there are no safety concerns for consumers, therefore there is no benefit in imposing the livestock feeding restriction on products containing maleic hydrazide.”

“As well as being an extremely welcomed decision, this outcome demonstrates the impact of effective collaboration between authorisation holders, who worked together with industry to devise a robust stewardship scheme, and to provide the data required.”

“Given the timeliness of this amendment, and that maleic hydrazide-containing products are being used in fields as we speak, this is excellent news.”
Since the announcement of the restriction earlier this year, stakeholders were active in their engagement as a collective industry, actions which contributed considerably to its removal.

Mark Taylor of the Fresh Potatoes Suppliers Association (FPSA):

“Since the announcement of the non-renewal of chlorpropham (CIPC), having a restriction on the use of maleic hydrazide-treated crops had an even greater impact for growers and packers.”

“By working together, we have achieved an extremely positive outcome, for which many will breathe a sigh of relief.”
Companies in this Article
AHDB Potatoes (formerly known as Potato Council) is a public body working on behalf of potato growers and purchasers to promote British potatoes.