This EAMU is an important step towards bolstering apple growers’ crop protection armoury following the withdrawal of pirimicarb and chorpyrifos in 2016. At the time it was feared these product losses would see woolly apple aphid escalate from being a sporadic to a major pest and Bayer’s campaign manager for horticulture Tim Lacey says this is exactly what has happened.
The EAMU permits a maximum of two treatments per year at a maximum individual dose of 1.7 L/ha with an interval of 14 days between applications. Mr Lacey says the dose is less than had been applied for and while being useful to UK growers cannot be expected to deliver the robustness of control the product was developed for and has been proven to deliver in Belgium.
“For UK orchards with a typical canopy height of 3.0 metres growers need a dose of 2.25 L/ha to get 750ml of Batavia per hectare per metre of canopy height. The EAMU dose of 1.7 L/ha delivers three quarters of this so expectations need to be framed accordingly.
“Under perfect conditions it should give good control but where the situation is less than ideal it may lose robustness. This could be where growth is being compromised by the weather or the ideal application timing has been missed or there is a very big population to control.”
However Mr Lacey still sees the EAMU as a significant step forward in two respects. “Batavia is now authorised for woolly apple aphid control and at a higher maximum individual dose than the 1.5 L/ha on the product label for other sucking pests. We’ve worked hard with AHDB Horticulture to get this EAMU but see it as a step towards the desired 2.25 L/ha dose which we will continue to pursue.”