The restrictions on neonicotinoid pesticides, which are believed to be detrimental to bees, enacted by the government of Ontario have caused uncertainty among farmers in Manitoba. However, growers there do not expect a similar ban in their province, according to a recent report from the Manitoba Co-operator.
Despite attempts by the Grain Farmers of Ontario to fight the ban though court proceedings, on October 23 the Ontario Superior Court upheld the law, which decrees that neoniotinoid use by Ontario farmers will be restricted in 2016. In 2017 the use of neonic treated seeds will be completely banned, unless sufficient need is demonstrated.
“Right now we are not supporting that kind of action. It seems for every neonic study you see that looks bad for bees, you’ll find one that shows there’s really no effect,” said Allan Campbell, president of the Manitoba Beekeepers’ Association.
Research indicates that bee deaths in southern Ontario are connected to noenic-treated corn and soybean seeds. However, in Western Canada, where the vast majority of canola is treated with
neonicotinoids, beekeepers in the regions have not reported any ill effects, according to Health Canada. Since the Ontario Superior Court’s decision, farmers and beekeepers in Manitoba seem to be working together to help guarantee that no such ban is enacted in their province.
Lynda Kiernan is Editor with HighQuest Group Media and of the Oilseed & Grain News. If you would like to submit a contribution for consideration, please contact Ms. Kiernan at email@example.com.