DE: Opinion: Could retailer pollinator policy jeopardize bee and grower well-being?
Fresh Fruit Portal: In today’s competitive food retailer business where margins are at their lowest and every new advantage may increase customer share, the incentive to find a new angle that gains customer approval and raises profile above that of competitors, even at the expense of sound judgment, may be difficult to resist. Following a retailer’s recent decision to ban eight allegedly ‘bee harming’ insecticides from its products, Christina Huxdorff from Greenpeace, Germany was quoted as saying, “This is just a beginning”. For growers worldwide who need these valuable tools to control potentially devastating pests in order to supply the European food chain, the concern must now be: where will it all end?
If growers accept this new requirement, they may have to stop using these effective crop protection products and go back to using less efficient chemistries, probably resulting in the need to use larger pesticide volumes and requiring more grower resources and input. Added to that is the risk that, by removing several compounds that have different modes of action from the grower’s integrated pest management toolbox, the risk of pest resistance building up is increased.