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MADISON – Public comments are open through June 6 on a proposed pesticide registration for a special local need in Wisconsin, allowing strawberry growers to use Spartan 4F® to control weeds.

The registration would help growers control weeds including common groundsel and ladysthumb in strawberries after harvest, when commercial growers mow their fields to rejuvenate the leaf canopy to help control insect and disease problems. After mowing, weeds can grow in the open space left from mowing. There are no registered herbicides to control these weeds in strawberries.

The active ingredient in Spartan 4F® is sulfentrazone. It is manufactured by FMC Corp.

Spartan 4F® is already registered for use on strawberries and other crops in Wisconsin, but it is labeled only for use before planting strawberries. It has previously been available for post-harvest use under a five-year special registration, but that registration expired Dec. 31, 2016. This new registration would expire Dec. 31, 2021.

The preliminary environmental assessment indicates that the proposed registration will not require a full environmental assessment.

For a copy of the assessment, contact Otto Oemig, DATCP, P.O. Box 8911, Madison, WI, 53708-8911, 608-224-4547, otto.oemig@wisconsin.gov. It is also available for review at the department Monday-Friday, 7:45 a.m.-4:30 p.m., 2811 Agriculture Dr., Madison, second floor. Comments received on or before 4:30 p.m., Tuesday, June 6, will become part of the preliminary environmental assessment record. Send comments to Otto Oemig by mail at the above postal or email address.

The special registration process allows states to register additional uses of pesticide products other than those listed on their labels, without prior federal approval. It helps growers address local pest problems that cannot be adequately controlled by any available federally registered product. These problems include insect outbreaks, fungal diseases, and grasses and weeds that outcompete crops. Details about the special registration process are available at https://datcp.wi.gov/Pages/Programs_Services/SpecialPesticideRegistrations.aspx.

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