June 25, 2008
Kansas Department of Agriculture
(785) 296-2653 phone
No detectible traces of fungicide on south-central Kansas wheat
TOPEKA - Kansas Secretary of Agriculture Adrian Polansky announced today that embargoes on 20 wheat fields and three grain elevators in south-central Kansas will be lifted based on test results that show no detectible traces of fungicide residue on wheat.
"This is good news for the affected farmers and for the Kansas wheat industry," Polansky said.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment had issued embargoes for wheat fields in Butler, Cowley, Harper, Kingman, Reno, Sedgwick and Sumner counties late Monday at the request of the Kansas Department of Agriculture. KDHE later embargoed wheat at three elevators after Department of Agriculture employees traced grain to them from three fields that were harvested before the embargoes could be delivered.
In question are late applications of Quilt, a fungicide that requires a 45-day waiting period between application and harvest. Its active ingredients have a low toxicity in humans. However, residue from Quilt's active ingredients must not exceed limits established by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
Quilt applications were made on the embargoed fields between May 13 and 21, meaning the 45-day waiting period expires between June 27 and July 5.
"These test results are an indication of how effective the waiting period is to ensure that chemical residues are at acceptable levels at harvest," Polansky said. "I expect we will find similar results from samples we collected in other parts of the state."
The Department of Agriculture is now testing samples from several northern counties, and results from some of those tests could be available as early as tomorrow afternoon.
The Kansas Department of Health and Environment embargoed those fields late yesterday to keep grain from moving while test results are pending. Affected are 51 fields covering a little more than 5,475 acres in 11 counties that were treated with Quilt as late as the first week of June: