A decision by Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) to ban the domestic use of the insecticide ingredient lambda-cyhalothrin on grains and oilseeds for animal feed from this month could affect dynamics in the feed sector, according to a report by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA).

In addition to new labelling requirements that prohibit domestic use, anyone delivering foreign or domestic grain to a grain-handling facility in Canada would have to declare that all grains supplied, “have only been treated with crop protection products and/or with active ingredients registered for use in Canada, in accordance with Canadian label directions”, the USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) 27 March report said.

The ban would cover all registered commodities from the oilseeds crop group, except for flax seed, mustard seed (oilseed type), and rapeseed (including canola). In addition, as soyabeans are defined by the PMRA as a legume, it would not be affected by the ban, the report said.

Used on canola to treat against flea beetles and other pests, lambda-cyhalothrin is also used on other crops although fewer alternatives are on the market for canola than for other crops, according to the report.

The PMRA’s ban could affect planting decisions in the 2023/24 marketing year, the report said.

“Alternative products are on the market and, reportedly, supplies are sufficient; however, some agronomists say the efficacy of alternatives can be lower than lambda-cyhalothrin-containing products, depending on the rationale for treatment,” the USDA said.

Due to concerns over risks to human health, revised Maximum Residue Limits (MRLs) for lambda-cyhalothrin for nearly 50 animal, horticultural and field crops would take effect in April 2024, a separate USDA report on 24 February said.

The revisions would reduce lambda-cyhalothrin MRLs to 0.01 parts/million (ppm) domestically and on any imports of these commodities into Canada.