UACES Facebook EPA grants crisis exemption to help Arkansas rice farmers fight armyworm scourge
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EPA grants crisis exemption to help Arkansas rice farmers fight armyworm scourge

Arkansas rice growers obtain crisis exemption to fight fall armyworms

July 28, 2021

By Mary Hightower
U of A System Division of Agriculture

Fast facts:

  • Arkansas rice growers can use Intrepid Wednesday
  • Full exemption still under review by EPA

(130 words)

LONOKE, Ark. — Arkansas rice farmers watching fall armyworms obliterate their fields can now fight back, with the federal Environmental Protection Agency on Wednesday granting a crisis exemption enabling growers to use a needed insecticide.

Last Friday, entomologists submitted documentation to obtain a Section 18 exemption to use Intrepid on rice. The crisis exemption allows use of Intrepid beginning July 28. Intrepid is labeled for use on other crops, but not rice.

“The specific exemption is still under review at EPA, but application can be made under the crisis exemption,” said Gus Lorenz, extension entomologist for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.

Lorenz has called this year’s armyworm situation the worst he’s seen in his career. In the days since the exemption process began, Lorenz said “it has probably cost growers several millions of dollars.”

See related story:

Arkansas is the nation's leading rice producer. 

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About the Division of Agriculture

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

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Media contact: Mary Hightower