South America Calling
Alastair Stewart South America Correspondent

Tuesday 10/08/13

Brazil Approves New Fungicide to Combat Soy Rust

Brazilian farmers will have a new weapon in their battle against Asian soybean rust after the Agriculture Ministry approved BASF's Orkestra SC fungicide.

It is the first time a carboxamide-based fungicide has been approved in Brazil, where until now farmers have been using strobilurin-based fungicides to control rust.

BASF claims the fungicide, which has already been approved in 30 countries, will increase yields.

Asian rust, or Phakopsora pachyrhizi, is one of the principle threats to the Brazilian soybean harvest, which promises to be the world's biggest this season.

Farmers in the Cerrado region currently apply strobilurin-based fungicides up to five times a season in a bid to control the fungus, which causes lesions on soy plant leaves, impeding the formation of the bean. This obviously represents a significant cost.

The Agriculture Ministry said it had rushed through the approval of Orkestra so that it can be employed in the current 2013-14 season.

But although planting of the soybean crop is still only 3% complete, the truth is that the announcement has come too late for this season as many farmers have already ordered all their inputs.

(AG)

Posted at 10:20AM CDT 10/08/13 by Alastair Stewart
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