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US environmental agency tells Germany's Bayer to stop producing insecticide

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has determined an insecticide made by the German company Bayer harms aquatic life. The EPA ordered Bayer to halt production of the chemical used on more than 170 crops.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Tuesday told two insecticide manufacturers to take the chemical flubendiamide off the market after a study found the insecticide ingredient poses a long-term risk to fish health.

"Required studies showed flubendiamide breaks down into a more highly toxic material that is harmful to species that are an important part of aquatic food chains, especially for fish, and is persistent in the environment," the EPA said in a statement.

The EPA ordered Germany's Bayer CropScience and Nichino America, a subsidiary of Japanese chemical maker Nihon Nohyaku Co., to halt production of the chemical after the two companies refused to voluntarily stop production in January.

Flubendiamide is the main ingredient in Bayer's Belt pesticide, used on more than 170 crops, including soybeans,

corn,

cotton, tobacco, pistachios, peanuts, sorghum, peppers, legumes, tomatoes and peppers.

The German chemical giant Bayer maintains flubendiamide is safe and has sought a review of the EPA's decision.

cw/gsw (AP)

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