MACA 2010: Troubling Changes

As the Mid America CropLife Asso­ciation (MACA) began planning for 2010, there appeared to be three key issues that were of concern. The first issue is mini-bulk containers, the second one is water issues and the third is education regarding the benefits of crop protection products.

MACA hosted a mini-bulk summit in November 2009 with 80 people attending representing distributors, state associations, basic manufacturers, regulatory, and vendors. The purpose of the summit was to recognize the significance of unwanted mini-bulk tanks in the distribution channel and address issues related to the rule requirements per EPA’s Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP). Possible solutions were discussed for dealing with those surplus tanks in an environmentally responsible manner. The purpose of the rule is to minimize human exposure during container handling, facilitate container disposal, and recycling, and to encourage the use of refillable containers.

Among several other panelists and speakers, the program included Nancy Fitz, U.S. EPA OPP, who reviewed the new mini-bulk container rule requirements which become effective on August 16, 2011. Fitz provided specific examples of how the new regulation will impact new containers, what will be required in recycling existing ones, and provided a timeline of compliance dates.
The summit also included presentations from Don Bradley, AgData, on the different types of containers; Marty Fitzpatrick, CropLife America Stewardship Committee, who provided a detailed industry overview; and Dave Hoyt, United Suppliers, on the industry’s responsibilities.

The summit also highlighted a variety of program recycling options. These included the Illinois Project with Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association’s (IFCA) Jean Payne and Kevin Runkle and GROWMARK’s Mary Schoettmer; the Ag Container Recycling Council with Ron Perkins; and Winfield Solutions’ John Howe, United Suppliers’ Hoyt, and Crop Production Services’ Steve Wiest on their respective companies’ plans for handling mini-bulk containers.

The summit concluded with general discussion by all participants about possible actions to address the mini-bulk container recycling issue. Among other recommendations, these included establishing a coordinated communications initiative to keep all interested parties informed, creating a special industry task force representing all stakeholders, and the consideration of a public recognition program to highlight recycling achievements.

While this may sound simple, it is not. It will take a coordinated effort by the industry. For example, IFCA conducted a recycling program in which 65 ag retail members participated and collected 2,261 obsolete mini-bulk containers. This was only a small percentage of the containers collected. So much work remains.

Water Worries

The second issue is water. The Mid­west is known for the Mississippi River, the Great Lakes, and all of the other rivers and streams running through the region. Minnesota received a grant to establish aquatic standards for 11 chemicals using the Great Lakes Tier II methodology. The Tier II methodology was never meant to be used for analyzing pesticides and thus using the methodology could result in much more stringent requirement for these chemicals.

MACA has worked in cooperation with CropLife America and the chemical company representatives, while the Minnesota ag stakeholders worked with the state and U.S. EPA representatives to ensure that the standards are scientifically based.

Another water issue is the National Cotton Council vs. EPA. In this case, the 6th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that chemical pesticide residue is a chemical waste and biological pesticides are pollutants, both of which require permits and that the application equipment is a point source. This ruling flies in the face of the exemption pesticides applications have had under FIFRA and the Clean Water Act and would now require a NPDES permit before chemicals are applied.

Industry has been providing feedback to EPA regarding the general template that can be used by the states and the scope of the interpretation of the ruling. CropLife America filed a petition for certiorari with the Supreme Court in November (see p. 16 for more details on this effort).

The Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement is being revised by U.S. and Canada and one of the key issues is how to handle “emerging chemical of concern.” President Obama has requested $475 million to assist in the restoration of the Great Lakes including non-point invasive species and contaminated sediment.

The third issue is education to promote and inform the benefits of crop protection products. This is an ongoing issue to reach out to elementary students in the Midwest region via the CropLife Ambassador Network (CAN) program. The purpose of CAN is to provide scientifically based, accurate information to the public regarding the safety and value of American agricultural food production. No longer does everyone have a connection to farming or agriculture and thus it is important that we reach out to communicate the benefits of agriculture to ensure a safe and abundant food supply.
Through the efforts of 50 industry volunteers more than 7,900 students in 140 schools were informed. In addition, numerous people have accessed the CAN Web site and downloaded the presentations for their use. The presentations include Farming & the Water Cycle, America’s Abundance, Today’s Agriculture, Careers Across the Spectrum, Farm Fueled Biofuels, and Farmers Stewards of the Land.

These are three specific issue areas that are of key concern to MACA members as they will impact the future of the crop protection industry.

Leave a Reply

Legislation Stories

Corn Field
LegislationTFI Hopes Court Dismissal Is ‘Final Chapter’ Of Des Moines Water Works Lawsuit
March 20, 2017
The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) released the following statement from President, Chris Jahn on the March 17, 2017, federal court dismissal Read More
Sonny Perdue
LegislationARA: Sonny Perdue Confirmation Delay Simply A Paperwork Snaffu
March 9, 2017
It’s been seven weeks since the White House named former Gov. Sonny Perdue (R-Ga.) as the nominee for the next Read More
Roy Blunt
LegislationARA Recognizes Blunt, Heitkamp For Legislative Efforts Supporting Agriculture
February 17, 2017
Agricultural industry continues to face federal regulatory challenges. Thankfully, agriculture’s allies in the U.S. Senate stepped forward. The Agricultural Retailers Read More
LegislationThe Fertilizer Institute Commends Senate On Confirmation Of New EPA Administrator
February 17, 2017
The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) President Chris Jahn issued the following statement on the Senate confirmation of Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Read More
Trending Articles
AdjuvantsA New Weed-Control Era Begins: But First, One Last Obstacle
March 4, 2017
There is trepidation, there is reluctance, and there is excitement. Ag retailers feel it all about the new dicamba and Read More
LIFT Academy video screenshot
Crop InputsLIFT Agriculture Academy: A Q&A With West Central Distribution’s Dean Hendrickson
March 1, 2017
West Central Distribution recently launched its LIFT Agriculture Academy, a new, premiere training and professional development resource for West Central’s ag Read More
Farmer and aptop
Matt Hopkins10 Warning Signs Your Website Is Grossly Outdated
February 8, 2017
Your Website is often a visitor’s first impression of your ag retail business. A positive first impression can set the Read More
AgriSync
Matt Hopkins17 Agriculture Apps That Will Help You Farm Smarter In 2017
December 9, 2016
Ag professionals are working smarter, not harder, than ever before. Smart farming technologies have enabled them to reduce costs, maximize Read More
R4023 Sprayer, John Deere
CropLife 100Ag Retail Equipment Report: The Green Party Continues
December 7, 2016
In the annual race for sales in the ag retail equipment marketplace, the color schemes for participants are a little Read More
Mike Stern
Precision AgClimate Corp. CEO Talks Retailer Support For Digital Ag
December 1, 2016
CropLife Magazine’s sister publication, AgriBusiness Global, recently sat down with Mike Stern, CEO of The Climate Corp., following the Monsanto subsidiary’s Read More
Latest News
UncategorizedPrecision Ag, Iowa Water, and GM Corn Updates
March 24, 2017
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj look at the state of precision agriculture, the dismissal of the Des Moines Water Read More
Pam Marrone
Crop InputsMarrone Bio Innovations Enters Biostimulants Market Wit…
March 23, 2017
Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc. is expanding beyond biopesticides and crop protection and into the biostimulant market by commercially launching Haven Read More
Nutrients for Life Foundation Teacher
FertilizerNutrients For Life Foundation Celebrates 10 Years Teach…
March 23, 2017
Those in agriculture know fertilizer is a vital ingredient to grow strong, productive crops. In fact, fertilizer is responsible for Read More
ManagementThink You Know Water? Take WinField United’s R…
March 22, 2017
Water is among our most precious resources, and arguably the hardest working, with just one percent available for human use, Read More
Corn Field
LegislationTFI Hopes Court Dismissal Is ‘Final Chapter’…
March 20, 2017
The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) released the following statement from President, Chris Jahn on the March 17, 2017, federal court dismissal Read More
Wheat Growers
Industry NewsWheat Growers CEO Dale Locken To Retire
March 20, 2017
CEO Dale Locken has announced that he plans to retire from Wheat Growers. Locken has served almost 15 years as Read More
Bayer Monsanto
Eric SfiligojBayer-Monsanto: Life, LibertyLink, And The Pursuit Of R…
March 20, 2017
As the calendar officially turns to spring, life is in full renewal mode. Flowers are blooming, birds are singing, and Read More
Corn Field
Crop InputsUltra Yield Micronutrients Acquires Kronos Micronutrien…
March 16, 2017
Ultra Yield Micronutrients, Inc. ”Ultra”, an affiliate of Cameron Chemicals, Inc., is pleased to announce that it has acquired the Read More
ManagementSnowstorms, Asset Sales, and Soybeans Prices
March 16, 2017
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj discuss the weather, precision ag, crop protection company mergers, and commodity prices in this Read More
Soybean Field
Seed/BiotechBayer Invests $8.1 million In Soybean Advancement In Th…
March 16, 2017
Growers in Illinois and across the Midwest now have the added benefit of a state-of-the-art soybean research facility, increasing accessibility Read More
CHS
CropLife 100CHS Acquires Western Co-op Transport Association
March 16, 2017
CHS Inc., North America’s leading farmer-owned cooperative and a global energy, grains and foods company, has purchased Western Co-op Transport Read More
Young corn plants in soil
HerbicidesBest Management Practices To Control PPO-Resistant Weed…
March 14, 2017
Weeds resistant to the class of herbicides called protoporphyrinogen oxidase (PPO) inhibitors are spreading at a faster rate than weed Read More
Photo credit: The United Soybean Board/The Soybean Checkoff.
Eric SfiligojFungicide Resistance On The Horizon
March 13, 2017
For many years now, the agricultural market has struggled to keep ahead of an ever-growing number of herbicide-resistant weeds. According Read More
Management2017 Commodity Classic Review
March 10, 2017
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj discuss what happened at the recent Commodity Classic in San Antonio. Read More
Farmer using AgriSync
ManagementMajor AgriSync Update Aims To Extend Ag Experts’ Power …
March 10, 2017
AgriSync announced a major update to its leading collaboration and service management tool for professional ag advisors and their farmer Read More
Agrible Pocket Spray Smart App
EquipmentNew Agrible Pocket Spray Smart App Alleviates Spraying …
March 10, 2017
There’s a new app to help farmers decide when to spray their fields. Pocket Spray Smart is a free iOS Read More
BPIA logo
Crop InputsBiological Products Trade Association Changes Name, Exp…
March 9, 2017
The Biological Products Industry Alliance (BPIA), formerly the BioPesticide Industry Alliance, is the new name of the rapidly growing U.S.-based Read More
BBI MagnaSpread Salford BBI
Equipment14 Fertilizer Spreaders For 2017
March 9, 2017
Application equipment manufacturers stressed flexibility and accuracy with this year’s crop of fertilizer spreaders. From AGCO’s TerraGator TG9300B and Case IH’s 810 Read More