Benefits for the crop

As a broad-spectrum herbicide highly effective against a variety of weeds, Glufosinate-ammonium has enabled the healthy production of more than 100 crops, including fruits and nuts, canola, soybean and cotton. This has fostered the availability of more high quality and affordable food as well as various products. Farmers also rely on GA when treating young trees as it is a contact herbicide and so can control weeds surrounding trees without harming the tree itself.

Additionally, crops such as canola, corn, cotton and soybeans with the LibertyLink trait are tolerant to Glufosinate-ammonium. Growers are therefore able to apply this herbicide in-crop for non-selective post-emergence weed control, right up to ten weeks prior to harvest, before these weeds jeopardize yield potential.

Apples are among the most popular fruits worldwide. The antioxidants in apple have several health promoting and disease prevention properties, and thereby, truly justifying the proverb “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”. The total world apple production amounts to almost 80 million tonnes a year. The main apple producer is China, which accounts for more than half of the global production, followed by the United States, India, Turkey, Poland and other countries.

As weeds create colder conditions and compete with apples for essential nutrients, apple farmers spend a considerable amount of management effort and financial resources each year to manage weeds, and to maintain high quality and affordable produce. In particular, they need to keep a band below the trees free of vegetation to avoid nutrition and water competition, and give the trees best growing conditions. On top of that, farmers also have to control excessive sucker growth.

Glufosinate-ammonium is one of the very few products on the market labelled for the control of suckers in apple orchards and a broad spectrum of weeds in one treatment without harming the mother tree. The use of Glufosinate-ammonium as an alternative to the commonly-used Glyphosate helps to avoid problems of weed resistance in apple. If applied correctly under the right weather conditions, it is among the safest crop protection solutions in apple orchards.

Apple orchard after weed control
Apple orchard after weed control

Did you know?

At present, there are at least 7,500 cultivated varieties of apples. If a person eats one different variety every single day, it will take over 20 years to try them all.1
  • The world biggest producer of apples is China, followed by the USA, Turkey and Poland. In 2012 China supplied 50% of the total world production.2
1 | Elzebroek, A.T.G. (2008). Guide to Cultivated Plants. CABI. p.27.
2 | FAOSTAT. (Figures from 2012). http://faostat.fao.org/site/339/default.aspx
Talking Weed Issues Across Continents

Richard Hinchliffe, and English farmer, and Santiago del Solar Dorrego, an Argentinian counterpart, discuss weed resistance with an Argentinian agricultural engineer, Fernando Garcia Frugoni. Even though Argentina and Europe have different agricultural practices, the challenge of weed resistance is common. Both regions discovered that today farmers have to think well in advance about what they are doing and make decisions about crops and rotations for years to come. In both regions, dealing with the problem is all about a "combined integrated approach with herbicides the last part of the puzzle". Cultural methods have to be integrated first before reaching for chemistry as the final piece.

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Is Glufosinate-ammonium present in our food?

Any traces of Glufosinate-ammonium that may remain on crops and that are ingested directly by humans or indirectly as a result of consuming meat and milk from animals that have fed on such crops are limited at stricter levels than defined toxicological safety thresholds.

Learn about LibertyLink Crops

Why GA helps farmers: apples

Is Glufosinate-ammonium present in our food?

Any traces of Glufosinate-ammonium that may remain on crops and that are ingested directly by humans or indirectly as a result of consuming meat and milk from animals that have fed on such crops are limited at stricter levels than defined toxicological safety thresholds.

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