The sale of two pesticides by Dow Chemicals' Dow AgroSciences, a subsidiary of Dow Chemical, accused of posing a risk to bees has been banned by a judgment issued Wednesday by the Administrative Court of Nice, which was seized in 2017 by supporters of the environment.
"The court found that sulfoxaflor, which is part of these pesticides and has the effect of acting on the central nervous system of insects, was likely, in the state of scientific knowledge, to present a significant risk of toxicity for pollinating insects, "according to a court statement.
Allowed in many countries
The latter put forward the precautionary principle to justify the cancellation of the marketing authorization of Transform and Closer granted by the National Health Security Agency (Anses) in September 2017. According to Dow AgroSciences, these two products are already allowed in many countries.
Their marketing authorization in France was immediately challenged by two environmental associations, Acting for the Environment and Generations Futures, and the National Union of French Apiculture.
Ruling in summary, the court had already suspended the sale of Transform and Closer in November 2017, a decision confirmed by the Council of State three months later.
Both pesticides are used to treat field crops and fruits and vegetables against aphids with the active substance, sulfoxaflor, which is presented by associations as "a new generation neonicotinoid" based on various scientific studies. Pesticides from the neonicotinoid family are about to be banned.
The manufacturer Dow had contested in 2017 any amalgam between neonicotinoids and sulfoxaflor, presented instead as "more respectful of biodiversity."