Pesticides for hashish: a glance again at 2020

A lot happened in the world of cannabis pesticides in 2020. The Canadian Pest Control Authority (PMRA) has re-approved or re-approved nearly two dozen sprays for growing cannabis. Let’s examine new and old pesticides used on cannabis in a much-needed 2020 look back.

Pesticides for cannabis

Here today, away tomorrow (and back again)

Some pesticides were previously removed from the PMRA’s list of approved cannabis pesticides. One release that wasn’t surprising was the fungicide Prestop. This author speculated that a batch of recalled cannabis just prior to pulling was linked to harmless growth of the fungicide. At some point in 2020, Prestop and four other pesticides were re-approved. Further layoffs in 2019 included three sprays from Neudorff. However, their pesticides were re-approved for use with cannabis in Canada in 2020.

That brings us to Actinovate SP from Monsanto partner Novaenzymes Bioag. This spray was approved for use on cannabis in 2014. In 2018, Novaenzymes urged Health Canada to revoke its cannabis cultivation permit. However, in 2020 that decision was clearly reversed as Acinovate SP is once again available to cannabis growers in Canada. In addition, the PMRA agency recently approved a general insecticide from Novaenzymes Bioag.

Active ingredient Name of the company Name of the spray Protects against
Pesticides added again
Potassium salts of fatty acids Neudorff GMBH KG Neudosan Commercial and Kopa Insecticidal Soap Different insects.
Rapeseed oil Neudorff GMBH KG Vegol Crop Oil Different insects.
Streptomyces Lydicus strain Wyec108 Novozymes Bioag Limited Actinovate SP Gray mold and mildew.
Gliocladium catenulatum Danstar Ferment AG transfer Soil and leaf diseases.

Recap pesticides on cannabis 2020Photo courtesy Havard University.

New cannabis sprays in 2020

There are currently 47 pesticides approved for use on cannabis in Canada (at the time of writing). There are a total of nine new active ingredients in this series. Aside from the above sprays, there were a few other exciting additions. Two of these are made up of viruses that benefit all cannabis farmers who have been plagued by cabbage loops or corn on the cob.

Active ingredient Name of the company Name of the spray Protects against
californica Nucleopoly-
Hedrovirus FV11
Sylvar Technologies Inc. Loopex Cabbage grinder.
armigera nucleopoly-
Hedrovirus BV-0003
Sylvar Technologies Inc. Helicovex Corn earwig.
Mineral oil* Bioworks Inc. Suffoil-x Different insects.
Dematiaceous earth DE Laboratories Inc. DX13 industry (spray) and dust Different insects.
Metarhiziu Anisopliae strain F52. Novozymes Bioag Limited Met52 EC Bioinsecticide General insecticide.
Streptomyces Lydicus strain WYEC 108 Mustgrow Biologics Corp. CannaPM Botrytis gray mold and powdery mildew
Trichoderma asperellum
Strain T34
Biocontrol Technologies, SL Asperello T34 Biocontrol Wilt, crown rot and rubber rot.
Trichoderma Harzianum Rifai strain T-22 * Koppert Canada Limited Trianum P Biological fungicide Fusarium root rot and cavity stain.
Gliocladium Catenulatum * Danstar Ferment AG Lalstop G46 WG Soil and leaf diseases.
Bacillus amyloliquefaciens, strain D747 Specific USA LLC Double Nickel LC and Double Nickel 55 Fungal and bacterial diseases.
Bacillus mycoides isolate J. Specific USA LLC Lifeguard shared flat Pathogen Defense System.
Soil sterilization
Chloropicrin Trieste Ag Group, Inc. Pic Plus and Chloropicrin 100 Liquid Soil pathogens.
* The active ingredient was previously approved for use with cannabis under a different brand.

Spring cleaning for 2021

Just before spring, the outdoor cannabis farms were preparing to begin their next season in Canada. One of the first steps is to prepare the soil, which can be full of nasty insects (soil microbes, mold, and other pests). We will discuss permitting soil fumigants and living soil as an alternative to a dead one in the next version.

Let us know if you think Canada’s legal cannabis industry has enough transparency about pest control practices in the comments. And await a deeper dive into some of the pesticides recently approved for cannabis use in 2020 and beyond.

Footnote (s)

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