Canadian canola producers have voiced their concern at Health Canada’s, the country’s governmental health organisation’s, proposed ban of the synthetic insecticide lambda-cyhalothrin, also known as Matador.

The registration of the pesticide – which is used to combat a wide range of canola pests including flea beetles, cutworms, bertha army worms and diamondback moths – was re-evaluated by Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) in June.

The re-evaluation, part of the mandate to inspect all pesticides used in Canada on a cyclical basis, found that there were “potential risks of concern from dietary exposure” and proposed revoking all food and feed uses of Matador.

However, Brian Innes, vice president of government relations with the Canola Council of Canada (CCC), hoped PMRA would reconsider the decision.

“This product in particular is quite valuable for growers in that it control quite a wide variety of pests that attack canola. Losing this product would be a serious concern for canola growers and for the industry as a whole,” Innes told Lacombe Online on 5 September.

Health Canada said in its decision that lambda-cyhalothrin had “one of the broadest registered use patterns” of all insecticides of its kind in Canada and that it was widely used in Canadian agriculture.

However, the agency also determined that the residual amounts of lambda-cyhalothrin in food and feed were above modern limits and caused a significant enough health risk to people that it recommended cancelling all food and feed registrations for the pesticide.

As the revocation would encompass all food uses, including imports, PMRA noted that if could cause trade conflicts between Canada and other countries, such as the USA, and it opened a consultation period in June.

The consultation period was set to expire on 21 September and Innes said the CCC would be submitting its opinion for the PMRA’s consideration.