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Are Herbicide-Resistant Crops a Friend or Foe of Weed Management?

Herbicide-resistant crops are now commonplace throughout the U.S. and Canada. But are they friend or foe when it comes to the prevention and management of herbicide-resistant weeds?

An article featured in the latest issue of the journal Weed Science says herbicide-resistant crops can play both roles. With good stewardship, they can contribute to effective, sustainable weed management. For example, they can reduce the intensity of herbicide use, support weed control across various growth stages with little to no crop injury, and support flexible planting dates to optimize crop yields and weed suppression.

Unfortunately, though, few growers are practicing restraint in how frequently they use herbicide-resistant crops in their fields. As a result, herbicide-resistant weeds are now ubiquitous in agricultural areas where herbicide-resistant crops are grown.

Since voluntary measures haven’t worked, the authors recommend adding new teeth to registration requirements and industry stewardship plans – backed by comprehensive training for seed retailers, agronomists and growers. They also recommend financial incentives to promote adoption of proper stewardship practices.

Want to learn more? You can read the article “Western United States and Canada perspective: Are herbicide-resistant crops the solution to herbicide-resistant weeds?”

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