Today’s potato industry depends upon technology both new and old to deliver the wide range of potato food products throughout the year, even though we work with Mother Nature on a seasonal product.
For over 50 years, Sprout Nip potato sprout inhibitor has provided protection for potatoes and growers’ profits. Available through a network of applicators, Sprout Nip prevents budding, peeping and sprouts for top-quality potatoes out of storage. In fact, it’s the most-widely used potato sprout inhibitor worldwide.
Sprout Nip, or chlorpropham (CIPC), is a solution for long-term storage of potatoes for the processing and fresh markets. It works by halting plant-cell division, preventing new growth and suppressing sprout formation.
Developed in 1953 by PPG, CIPC was originally used a pre-emergence herbicide. PPG pioneered the use in sprout suppression, and Sprout Nip became the first potato sprout inhibitor in the industry. Platte Chemical Company and Aceto Agricultural Corporation acquired the rights to the name and to the business in 1990.
CIPC continues to be considered the gold standard for sprout suppression on potatoes post-harvest. It has and continues to be deemed safe and effective by a number of world regulatory bodies, including the U.S., Canada, European Union, Australia and New Zealand.
The Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) of 1996 mandates a registration review program of all U.S. pesticides. The U.S. EPA has set a 15-year cycle for product reviews. The previous Registration Review of CIPC took place with the 1996 issuance of the Re-registration Eligibility Decision (RED). In keeping with the 15-year review cycle, the EPA initiated the re-evaluation of CIPC in December 2010.
The official review for the re-registration opened up with the call for public comments in 2010. Based upon these public comments, as well as the EPA’s own internal review and assessment of the current data package that has been generated to support the chemical,
The EPA is in the process of putting together a list of additional research studies in light of new research methods not available 15 years ago. This will ensure CIPC will continue to be deemed safe for use on potatoes as a sprout suppressant product.
This is called the “Data Call In” or (DCI).
As of today, the main focus of new study work is a result of the EPA Registration Requirements’ “registration bar” being raised over the years. As a result, older products that have previously gone through the review work before the raising of the bar now need to play catch-up to the current requirements.
The CIPC Task Force, made up of Aceto Agricultural Chemicals Corporation and Decco U.S. Port-Harvest, Inc., was formed to respond to the previous re-registration review process. The Task Force has continued its operation existence all these years and will again be taking the lead to satisfactorily and scientifically respond to any and all questions the EPA might ask in support of CIPC for the potato industry. The CIPC Task Force anticipates the cost for the review as it was during the previous review process will be several million dollars. The review process is anticipated to take four more years and will be completed in the second half of 2016.
Once CIPC goes through the EPA process, the industry will continue to enjoy the use of a safe, cost-effective tool for modern potato storage for another 15 years.