Bentazone Water Stewardship
Updated: May 2020
Environment Agency data shows that bentazone (the herbicide active substance in Basagran® SG and other products) is the most frequently detected approved pesticide in UK groundwater and is also increasingly being found in surface water. Due to the link between EU legislation on pesticides and water, it is possible that the EU approval for bentazone will not be renewed, resulting in the loss of all bentazone products across Europe.
BASF’s Bentazone Water Stewardship Programme is a proactive initiative aimed at encouraging responsible product use. BASF’s advice was updated for 2017 (and further reviewed In 2019) to also include recommendations for surface water in addition to groundwater High Risk Areas (Drinking Water Groundwater Safeguard Zones for bentazone (DWGwSgZ) or nitrates and Groundwater Source Protection Zones 1+2 (GwSPZ)). See the Environment Agency’s website 'Check Zones' for DWGwSgZ & Natural England 'Magic Map' for GwSPZ.
BASF asks growers and advisors to consider these updated recommendations and to look at 'Check Zones' and 'Magic Map' ahead of product use this spring. The Voluntary Initiative’s Water Protection Advice Sheet (WPAS) for Bentazone has been updated for 2019 to reflect BASF’s recommendations (see link below).