The Federal Office for Consumer Protection and Food Safety (BVL) ordered the suspension of the approvals for the following plant protection products in a decision dated December 4, 2020:
- ARGOS (approval number 008950-00), active ingredient: orange oil, approved since October 29, 2020 and
- 1,4SIGHT (approval no.008692-00), active ingredient: 1,4-dimethylnaphthalene, approved since March 16, 2018.
The orders apply with immediate effect. As a result, the mentioned plant protection products may no longer be placed on the market or used from December 4, 2020. This also applies to related pesticides from parallel trade.
Both pesticides are approved for use as growth regulators to inhibit sprouting on potatoes by means of hot or cold misting.
In the district of Anhalt-Bitterfeld in Saxony-Anhalt and in the district of Neustadt an der Waldnaab in Bavaria, there were major fires in potato stores. The warehouses burned out completely and property damage worth millions. According to previous knowledge, the cause of the fire was the hot fogging of one of the mentioned pesticides with possibly unsuitable devices. The approvals are suspended in order to avert further fires and thus in particular a possible danger for users, residents and other people. The suspension will only be lifted if, after further clarification of the facts, it has been proven that the plant protection products can be used safely, if necessary after the approval conditions have been adjusted.
Hot misting devices that were suitable for pesticides that are no longer approved and therefore may already be available in the factories could be unsuitable for the application. TheBVL checks the facts, in particular with regard to the availability of the necessary equipment and whether the information on the label and in the instructions for use is sufficient.