As described in a previous post, growers were surveyed about their production costs, their current and projected uses of pesticides, and their perception on neonicotinoids. We have some preliminary results to report, with more forthcoming in future publications.

Pictures of petunias, pansies, chrysanthemums, hostas and daylilies.
Plants identified as having high profit margins for growers through our survey.

When it comes to growers’ production costs, we found that production costs vary significantly among growers. Differences in costs are often due to the size of the operation or the combination of crops they produce. Similarly, the profitability of each operation varies significantly depending on the types of crops produced. Some of the plants that have high profit margins for growers are petunias, pansies, chrysanthemums, hostas, and daylilies. Growers’ profit margins were not significantly impacted by changes in pesticide-use alone. It turns out that the combined effected of pesticide-use and labor has a more profound effect on profit margins.

When asking growers about their current and projected uses of pesticides, we found that foliar application were the most common application method used by growers, followed by liquid drench and soil/granular applications. The following were the three most widely used neonicotinoid brands among surveyed growers:

  • Safari
  • Dinotefuran
  • Sagcity (Dinotefuran)
  • Calypso (Thiacloprid)
  • Arena (Chlothianidin)

The following were indicated as the most widely used non-neonicotinoids brands:

  • Acephate/Orthene (Acephate)
  • BotaniGard ES (Beauveria bassiana Strain GHA)
  • Konotos (Spirotetramat)
  • Distance IGR and Fulcrum (Pyriproxifen)
  • Endeavor (Pymetrozine)
  • Mainspring GNL (Cyantraniliprole)

In terms of growers’ perceptions of neonicotinoids, over 60% of the growers surveyed anticipated an increase in costs if the use of neonicotinoid pesticides were restricted. Growers predicted an increase in both application frequency and man-hours associated with switching from neonicotinoid to non-neonicotinoid pesticide application.

Only 25% of the growers surveyed agreed that labeling products treated with neonicotinoids should be mandatory, while 59% were opposed to the mandatory labeling of neonicotinoids. (In our work on Bees & Public Perception, on the other hand, we’ve found that over 75% of the consumers surveyed agreed that the labeling of neonicotinoids should be mandatory.)

Researcher: Dr. Hayk Khachatryan

States: Most of the U.S.A.