Off patent agrochemical business Rotam has reiterated its commitment to sulfonylurea (SU) herbicides in the face of a challenging regulatory environment. The company says it is to invest in its regulatory capability to ensure its SUs will be renewed for use at EU level and that member states re-register its formulated products. 

Senior vice president Dr Yifan Wu, speaking at a recent SU conference in Frankfurt, pointed out that Rotam’s SU products are based on world-class research and development facilities. He pointed out that the company has had 230 patents granted, and employed screening and experimental farms in product development and global field trials – 3,500 of which were carried out in Europe alone. “Our facilities mean we can offer a sustainable supply of SU products,” Dr Wu said. “Our products are sold in 69 countries and used on more than 10 crops with excellent customer feedback.” The conference also heard that new chemistry to control broad leaved weeds could take at least 10 years to develop, and concentrated on the effective use of existing products in the short to medium term.

James Anderson, regulatory affairs and product development senior manager at Rotam, said: “With environmental standards becoming more demanding, it is important to have a detailed understanding of the chemistry and the capability to deal with an increasingly complex regulatory environment across the EU, and within each MS.

“Rotam thoroughly understands these challenges and can offer those recommending, buying and using SU products from our portfolio the confidence that we’ll support them. We’ve yet to see harmonisation of EU regulations across Europe – each MS can have differing approaches, timelines and mitigation measures. As a result, it is difficult to predict the outcomes of re-registrations. However, our strong regulatory team will continue to support the position that SUs are essential in cereal weed management programmes across the continent and cannot be replaced.”