Published Mar 9, 2016

Neonicotinoid Seed Treatments: Are They Necessary?

By Practical Farmers of Iowa


Dick Sloan farms near Rowley in northeastern Iowa. For the past two years, he has conducted on-farm research on soybeans grown from neonicotinoid-treated and untreated seeds, and found no differences in yield. As a result, he has been able to cut input costs on his farm. Matt O’Neal, research entomologist at Iowa State University, will discuss recent research on the possible negative impacts of neonicotinoids, along with management alternatives for growers.

Dick and Diana Sloan sustain 720 acres of family-owned cropland in the Cedar River Watershed in northeastern Iowa. They employ many conservation practices, including no-till farming, tile drainage, grassed waterways, contoured buffers, terraces, prairie strips, small grains and cover crops.

Matt O’Neal is an associate professor of entomology at Iowa State University, where he oversees research related to the management of insect pests of annual crops, with a focus on soybeans. His overall goal is to develop pest management programs that are economically and environmentally sustainable.

Farminar handouts:
Probability of Cost-Effective Management of Soybean Aphid in North America

Are neonicotinoid seed treatments in soybean production worth it?