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Rotation important to protect key insecticide

Creation date: 23 August 2019

The rotation of chemistry within horticultural crop cycles is a major tool to protect the benchmark Coragen® insecticide from developing resistance. 


Coragen from FMC is a key insecticide which is used in a wide range of vegetable crops in Australia.


FMC Northern Manager, Doug McCollum, said Coragen was the cornerstone of insect control programs and was performing well after more than ten years.


He said it was important to ensure Coragen remained a viable option for years to come.


“Insect resistance is always of great concern for any chemistry and is particularly valid for the Group 28 family, of which Coragen is a part.”


“Group 28 chemistry has been widely used throughout the world because of its ability to effectively control the target pest.”


“It also has other positive attributes that include good residual control, low toxicity to non-target species and a very favourable environmental profile.”


Mr McCollum said the widespread use of Group 28 chemistry in other countries has led to the development of resistance and it was important to learn from that experience

“While Coragen is the cornerstone product in many insecticide spray programs, it should always be used as per label direction and in conjunction with other non-Group 28 chemistry.”


“There are a maximum of three applications of Coragen allowed per season.” 


“In Australia we are fortunate that there are other insecticides registered in the majority of horticultural crops that can help fill those gaps to ensure quality produce is achieved at the end of the season.” 


“As an example, Avatar® insecticide is a Group 22A insecticide, which is often used by growers early in the season.


“The majority of growers are then using Coragen when pest pressure is at its greatest, with two consecutive applications.”


“This timing allows growers to maximise the ability of this important insecticide to effectively control those target pests.” 


Mr McCollum said the ability of Coragen to suit an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) program was also positive in terms of addressing insect resistance.


“By leaving beneficial insects in the field there is a chance that pests that may be resistant to Group 28 chemistry could be eaten by predators.”


“There isn’t any doubt IPM programs have a part to play in reducing the risks of chemical resistance.”


Coragen insecticide is registered across a broad range of horticultural crops which helps with inventory control.


It controls a wide range of pests including Caterpillars, Leaf miners and Loopers and its effectiveness is due to a range of attributes.


Mr McCollum said pests exposed to Coragen stop feeding almost immediately for rapid crop protection.


“The insecticide also targets a wide range of life cycle stages from eggs and hatched larvae through to larger sized grubs.”


He said the translaminar activity was also important in Leafy vegetables and other crops where Coragen will move through the leaf to protect the other side and access grubs hidden away from direct contact. 


Coragen can be applied by air and ground spray, there aren’t any specific PPE requirements and is a non-scheduled poison.


Mr McCollum said it was vitally important to protect this and other chemistries to ensure they are available to the farmer for many years to come.


“Chemical rotations, IPM practices and sticking to label requirements are all important factors in reducing the risk of insecticide resistance,” he said. 




Image: High quality produce is achieved with the use of Coragen® insecticide in a wide range of horticultural crops throughout Australia. 

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