The IR-4 Program: Interactions with the Crop Protection Industry and with the Regulators
The IR-4 Program started with a small grant from the U.S. land grant university system in 1963. It has grown over the past 43 years to a unique partnership between the land grant universities, the USDA (Cooperative States Research Extension and Education Service or CSREES) and the Agriculture Research Service or ARS, growers and commodity groups, the agrichemical industry and several regulatory partners (the Environmental Protection Agency/EPA, California's Department of Pesticide Regulation/CDPR and Health Canada's Pest Management Regulatory Agency/PMRA). Direct funding for 2006 will approach $17 million ($10.7 million from CSREES, $3.8 million from ARS, $1.7 million from the crop protection industry and $0.5 million from the land grant universities). In-kind support of nearly $13 million ($11 million from the land grant universities and $2 million from the crop protection industry) make the total investment by stakeholders of nearly $30 million. The major reasons for this significant public/private investment in IR-4 are the value of specialty crops (minor or horticultural crops) in the U.S. are approaching $50 billion and the lack of an economic incentive for the crop protection industry to invest nearly $200,000 per crop (IR-4 costs and EPA registration fees) to obtain tolerances or Maximum Residue Levels (MRLs) on these low acreage crops. This article will focus on two key IR-4 partners: the crop protection industry and regulatory agencies to emphasize their important contributions to IR-4 in making new crop protection tools available for specialty crop growers.
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Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: August 1, 2006
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