Citing concerns over massive decline in bee populations due to Colony Collapse Disorder, the French health and safety agency, ANSES, said it will ban the use of Syngenta’s pesticide, Cruiser OSR, used to coat rapeseed plants. The French ban on the pesticide will take effect before the start of the next rapeseed sowing campaign in late summer, reported Reuters.
Cruiser OSR contains thiamethoxam as one of the active ingredients, a compound which is part of the neonicotinoids family. Neonicotinoids are systemic pesticides used to coat seeds. For years evidence has been mounting about the detrimental impact of systemic pesticides on bees. This year alone, four new studies emerged implicating systemic pesticides in the unprecedented decline in bee populations. These pesticides are of a particular concern because they kill sucking and chewing insects by disrupting their nervous system.
Furthermore, “unlike older pesticides that evaporate or disperse shortly after application, neonicotinoids are systemic poisons. Applied to the soil or doused on seeds, neonicotinoids insecticides incorporate themselves into the plant’s tissues, turning the plant itself into a tiny poison factory emitting toxin from its roots, leaves, stems, pollen, and nectar.” These pesticides also persist in the soil for longer than the older generation pesticides.