The government has approved the recommendations of the expert committee formed to suggest alternatives to the pesticides banned by the government recently.

It also asked the Kerala Agriculture University to study about the quality and utility of the alternatives, recommended on an interim basis, and examine whether better alternatives were available.

The expert committee recommended ten pesticides in lieu of carbofuran which is used against certain pests in paddy and other crops. The alternatives for use in paddy include green category pesticides chlorantraniliprole and flubendiamide besides yellow-labelled pesticides such as carbosulfan and quinalphos. These pesticides can also be used as alternative to phorate against specified pests.

Quinalphos, carbaryl and other pesticides have been recommended in lieu of methyl parathion against certain pests. These pesticides could also replace monocrotophos and endosulfan against specified crop-pest complex.

Alternatives are not recommended for the banned pesticides methyl demeton and prephenophos as they had not been recommended against any pest earlier. No alternative has been found for the fungicide methoxy ethyl mercuric chloride. So, the committee recommended use of bordo mixture (one per cent) in emergencies.

Butachlor and pretilachlor are recommended as replacement for the banned herbicides anilophos and thiobencarb. Diuron is proposed as an alternative to banned weedicide atrazin. Paraquat could be replaced with glyphosate, a broad-spectrum systemic herbicide.

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