Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals

A special issue of Agrochemicals (ISSN 2813-3145).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 January 2023) | Viewed by 26850

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
Laboratory of Entomology and Agricultural Zoology, Crop Production and Rural Environment, Department of Agriculture, University of Thessaly, Phytokou Str., 38443 N. Ionia, Magnesia, Greece
Interests: pheromones and semiochemicals; insect parasitoids; population ecology; sampling and trapping; invasive biology; integrated pest management; microbial control; chemical control; non-chemical control; stored-product protection
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Guest Editor
Laboratory of Entomology and Agricultural Zoology, Crop Production and Rural Environment, Department of Agriculture, University of Thessaly, Phytokou Str., 38443 N. Ionia, Magnesia, Greece
Interests: entomology; sustainable agriculture; beetles; insect; wheat
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

It is with great pleasure that we announce the initiation of a new journal, Agrochemicals, which aims to cover all scientific aspects that are related to this area. Agrochemicals constitute an extremely wide area of research that includes different types of substances, different uses, as well as different target applications, environmental aspects, and socioeconomic projections. As such, the agro-food sector still heavily relies on the use of agrochemicals as the main weapon against pests, diseases and weeds, but also in plant growth regulation, soil improvement, and many more. In this context, in order to celebrate the initiation of Agrochemicals, we are pleased to announce this Special Issue (SI), with the ambition to cover all aspects from mode of action to consumers’ acceptance and from natural pesticides to synthesis and efficacy. We consider that this SI, which is going to be the first SI of Agrochemicals, should have the same broad character as the journal itself and cover regulate articles, reviews, and short communications in all aspects that are related to this exciting topic. We expect that this SI will be an important scientific forum in the extremely demanding and often unexplored area of agrochemicals, and we encourage colleagues from around the globe to submit their articles.

Prof. Dr. Christos G. Athanassiou
Dr. Maria K. Sakka
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Agrochemicals is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • pesticides
  • herbicides
  • fungicides
  • fertilizers
  • soil improvement factors
  • plant growth regulators
  • socioeconomic aspects of agrochemicals
  • environmental aspects of agrochemicals
  • mode of action and synthesis

Published Papers (10 papers)

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Research

Jump to: Review, Other

17 pages, 2311 KiB  
Article
Neonicotinoid Sunflower Seed Treatment, While Not Detected in Pollen and Nectar, Still Impacts Wild Bees and Crop Yield
by Laura T. Ward, Michelle L. Hladik, Aidee Guzman, Ariana Bautista and Nicholas J. Mills
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(2), 279-295; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2020018 - 6 Jun 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1850
Abstract
Neonicotinoid seed treatments are commonly used in agricultural production even though their benefit to crop yield and their impact on pollinators, particularly wild bees, remains unclear. Using an on-farm matched pair design in which half of each field was sown with thiamethoxam treated [...] Read more.
Neonicotinoid seed treatments are commonly used in agricultural production even though their benefit to crop yield and their impact on pollinators, particularly wild bees, remains unclear. Using an on-farm matched pair design in which half of each field was sown with thiamethoxam treated seed and half without, we assessed honey bee and wild bee exposure to pesticides in sunflower fields by analyzing pesticide residues in field soil, sunflower pollen and nectar, pollen-foraging and nectar-foraging honey bees, and a sunflower specialist wild bee (Melissodes agilis). We also quantified the effects of thiamethoxam-treated seed on wild bee biodiversity and crop yield. M. agilis abundance was significantly lower with thiamethoxam treatment and overall wild bee abundance trending lower but was not significantly different. Furthermore, crop yield was significantly lower in plots with thiamethoxam treatment, even though thiamethoxam was only detected at low concentrations in one soil sample (and its primary metabolite, clothianidin, was never detected). Conversely, wild bee richness was significantly higher and diversity was marginally higher with thiamethoxam treatment. Nectar volumes harvested from the nectar-foraging honey bees were also significantly higher with thiamethoxam treatment. Several pesticides that were not used in the sunflower fields were detected in our samples, some of which are known to be deleterious to bee health, highlighting the importance of the landscape scale in the assessment of pesticide exposure for bees. Overall, our results suggest that thiamethoxam seed treatments may negatively impact wild bee pollination services in sunflower. Importantly, this study highlights the advantages of the inclusion of other metrics, such as biodiversity or behavior, in pesticide risk analysis, as pesticide residue analysis, as an independent metric, may erroneously miss the impacts of field realistic pesticide exposure on bees. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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10 pages, 1795 KiB  
Article
Influence of Chemical Control on the Floristic Composition of Weeds in the Initial and Pre-Harvest Development Stages of the Sunflower Crop
by Elielton Germano dos Santos, Miriam Hiroko Inoue, Ana Carolina Dias Guimarães, Jennifer Stefany Queiroz Bastos, Ricardo Alcántara-de la Cruz and Kassio Ferreira Mendes
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(2), 193-202; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2020014 - 15 May 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1124
Abstract
The presence of weeds in the sunflower crop is one of the main factors linked to the low increase in productivity of this crop, and to determine the most appropriate management of weeds, it is essential to carry out a diagnosis through the [...] Read more.
The presence of weeds in the sunflower crop is one of the main factors linked to the low increase in productivity of this crop, and to determine the most appropriate management of weeds, it is essential to carry out a diagnosis through the phytosociological survey. The objective of this study was to assess the influence of chemical control on the phytosociological community of weeds in three areas cultivated with sunflower in the Parecis region (Brazil). The areas were treated with 2,4-D + glyphosate for desiccation; S-metolachlor was used for pre-emergence control in the three areas; meanwhile, sulfentrazone and flumioxazin were applied only in one area; and, finally, clethodim was applied for post-emergence weed management. Sampling was carried out at two different times, in the initial and pre-harvest stages (at 35 and 100 days after the emergence of the crop, respectively), using a quadrate, in which weeds were identified and quantified to determine the frequency, relative frequency, density, relative density, abundance, relative abundance, importance index, and similarity index between areas and times. Seventeen weed species were found in the sunflower crop (70.6% dicot and 29.4% monocotyledonous) in the two seasons, grouped into nine botanical families, with Poaceae being the most diverse family. The dicots Tridax procumbens and Acanthospermum hispidium were present in low frequency only in the initial stages of development of the sunflower crop. The weeds with the highest importance index values in the initial and pre-harvest stages were Euphorbia hirta (104 and 91%) and Bidens pilosa (45 and 66%, respectively), both belonging to the dicots group. These two species were present in the two evaluated periods and in the three experimental areas, demonstrating that there was a similarity index between them with values above 93%. These results of the phytosociological study may contribute to determining more efficient management strategies for weed chemical control in the sunflower crop. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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12 pages, 1621 KiB  
Article
Fungicide Scent Pollution Disrupts Floral Search-and-Selection in the Bumblebee Bombus impatiens
by Nour Yousry, Paige Henderson and Jordanna Sprayberry
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(2), 181-192; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2020013 - 18 Apr 2023
Viewed by 1653
Abstract
Bumblebees are valuable generalist pollinators. However, micro- and macro-stressors on bumblebees negatively impact both foraging efficiency and pollination efficacy. Given that colonies have a resource threshold for successful reproduction, factors that decrease foraging efficiency could negatively impact conservation efforts. Recently, agrochemical odor pollution [...] Read more.
Bumblebees are valuable generalist pollinators. However, micro- and macro-stressors on bumblebees negatively impact both foraging efficiency and pollination efficacy. Given that colonies have a resource threshold for successful reproduction, factors that decrease foraging efficiency could negatively impact conservation efforts. Recently, agrochemical odor pollution has been shown to hinder floral odor learning and recognition in Bombus impatiens via an associative odor learning assay (FMPER). These results may have implications for the field foraging behavior of bumblebees. Building on this prior work, our study aimed to determine if negative effects of fungicides on associative odor learning and recognition scale up to negative impacts on actively foraging bumblebees. These experiments investigated whether the presence of a background fungicide odor (Reliant® Systemic Fungicide) impacts the location of a learned floral resource (lily of the valley-scented blue flowers) in a wind tunnel. Experiments were run with and without early access to visual cues to determine if fungicide odor pollution is more impactful on bees that are engaged in olfactory versus visual navigation. Fungicide odor pollution reduced landing frequency in both paradigms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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11 pages, 1831 KiB  
Article
Multiple Pesticide Resistance in Rust-Red Flour Beetle (Tribolium castaneum, Herbst 1797) from Northern Nigeria Is Probably Driven by Metabolic Mechanisms
by Muhammad M. Mukhtar, Muhammad A. Mustapha, Mubarak Aliyu and Sulaiman S. Ibrahim
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(2), 170-180; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2020012 - 6 Apr 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2092
Abstract
There is a severe lack of information about molecular mechanisms of pesticide resistance in the rust-red flour beetle, a major pest destroying grains and flour across Nigeria, hindering evidence-based control. Here, we identified to the species level three populations of the red flour [...] Read more.
There is a severe lack of information about molecular mechanisms of pesticide resistance in the rust-red flour beetle, a major pest destroying grains and flour across Nigeria, hindering evidence-based control. Here, we identified to the species level three populations of the red flour beetle from Kano, Nigeria, as Tribolium castaneum (Herbst 1797) and investigated the mechanism driving their insecticide resistance. The IRAC susceptibility bioassays established cypermethrin resistance, with LC50s of 4.35–5.46 mg/mL in the three populations, NNFM, R/Zaki and Yankaba. DDT and malathion resistance were observed in NNFM, with LC50s of 15.32 mg/mL and 3.71 mg/mL, respectively. High susceptibility was observed towards dichlorvos in all three populations with LC50s of 0.17–0.35 mg/mL. The synergist bioassay with piperonylbutoxide significantly restored cypermethrin susceptibility, with mortality increasing almost threefold, from 24.8% obtained with 1.5 mg/mL of cypermethrin to 63.3% in the synergised group (p = 0.013), suggesting a preeminent role of P450s. The two major knockdown resistance (kdr) mutations, T929I and L1014F, in the IIS4 and IIS6 fragments of the voltage-gated sodium channel were not detected in both cypermethrin-alive and cypermethrin-dead beetles, suggesting a lesser role of target-site insensitivity mechanisms. These findings highlight the need to explore alternative control tools for this pest and/or utilise synergists, such as piperonyl butoxide, as additional chemistries in pesticide formulations to improve their efficacy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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12 pages, 1044 KiB  
Article
EU Chemical Plant Protection Products in 2023: Current State and Perspectives
by Patrice A. Marchand
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(1), 106-117; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2010008 - 8 Feb 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 6128
Abstract
Agrochemicals are synthetic or hemi-synthetic crop protection substances which are supervised by the EU Regulation EC 1107/2009, which give rise to plant protection products (PPP) with market authorizations. Most of these active substances of chemical origin were transferred from the previous Annex I [...] Read more.
Agrochemicals are synthetic or hemi-synthetic crop protection substances which are supervised by the EU Regulation EC 1107/2009, which give rise to plant protection products (PPP) with market authorizations. Most of these active substances of chemical origin were transferred from the previous Annex I of Directive 91/414/EEC to Part A of Regulation EU 540/2011, with newly approved active substances mainly being listed in Part B or E, while renewed substances were moved from Part A to Part B or E. In this study, approved agrochemicals from the early part of 2023 are organized into categories, families, functions, usages, treated crop categories, regulatory characteristics, and maximum residue limits (MRLs). Perspectives regarding their evolution are also described together with pending approvals. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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16 pages, 3062 KiB  
Article
Oxyfluorfen and Linuron: Residual Effect of Pre-Emergence Herbicides in Three Tropical Soils
by Dilma F. de Paula, Guilherme A. de P. Ferreira, Tiago Guimarães, Maura G. da S. Brochado, Leandro Hahn and Kassio F. Mendes
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(1), 18-33; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2010003 - 9 Jan 2023
Viewed by 2700
Abstract
Knowledge about the residual effect of herbicides is important in order to increase agronomic efficacy and reduce environmental problems. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the residual effect of oxyfluorfen and linuron in three soils. Pots of 0.35 dm3 [...] Read more.
Knowledge about the residual effect of herbicides is important in order to increase agronomic efficacy and reduce environmental problems. Therefore, the objective of this study was to evaluate the residual effect of oxyfluorfen and linuron in three soils. Pots of 0.35 dm3 were filled with three Brazilian soils: Ultisol, Oxisol, and Inceptisol. Then, the herbicides were applied at different times at 0, 15, 30, 45, 60, 90, 120, 150, 180, and 200 days and the bioindicator species of linuron and oxyfluorfen were sown. Then, the injury was evaluated at 7, 14, and 21 days after emergence (DAE) to find the half-life of the herbicide residue level (RL50) and the dose of herbicide that provides a 50% reduction in dry matter (GR50). In the soil with oxyfluorfen application, the RL50 at 21 DAE was 59, 57, and 51 days and GR50 was 49, 47, and 31 days for Ultisol, Oxisol, and Inceptisol, respectively. Soils with linuron application had RL50 of 75, 92, and 149 days and GR50 of 52, 48, and 120 days for Ultisol, Oxisol, and Inceptisol, respectively. The higher organic matter and clay content of Ultisol compared to Oxisol and Inceptisol resulted in a lower residual effect of linuron. There was little difference between soil type and the residual effect of oxyfluorfen, which may be related to the physicochemical characteristics of the molecule. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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Review

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42 pages, 799 KiB  
Review
The Herbicide Glyphosate and Its Formulations Impact Animal Behavior across Taxa
by Becky Talyn, Kelly Muller, Cindy Mercado, Bryan Gonzalez and Katherine Bartels
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(3), 367-408; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2030022 - 10 Jul 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 3441
Abstract
Use of glyphosate and glyphosate-based herbicides is ubiquitous in US agriculture and widespread around the world. Despite marketing efforts to the contrary, numerous studies demonstrate glyphosate toxicity to non-target organisms including animals, primarily focusing on mortality, carcinogenicity, renal toxicity, reproductive, and neurological toxicity, [...] Read more.
Use of glyphosate and glyphosate-based herbicides is ubiquitous in US agriculture and widespread around the world. Despite marketing efforts to the contrary, numerous studies demonstrate glyphosate toxicity to non-target organisms including animals, primarily focusing on mortality, carcinogenicity, renal toxicity, reproductive, and neurological toxicity, and the biochemical mechanisms underlying these physiological outcomes. Glyphosate toxicity also impacts animal behavior, both in model systems and in agricultural and environmentally relevant contexts. In this review, we examine the effects of glyphosate and glyphosate-based herbicides on animal behaviors, particularly activity, foraging and feeding, anti-predator behavior, reproductive behaviors, learning and memory, and social behaviors. Glyphosate can be detected both in food and in the environment, and avoided through activity and feeding strategies. However, exposure also reduces activity, depresses foraging and feeding, increases susceptibility to predation, interferes with courtship, mating, fertility and maternal behaviors, decreases learning and memory capabilities, and disrupts social behaviors. Changes in animal behavior as a result of glyphosate toxicity are important because of their sometimes severe effects on individual fitness, as well as ecosystem health. Implications for human behavior are also considered. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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12 pages, 305 KiB  
Review
Development of Quality Requirements of Chemical Analytical Measurements
by Árpád Ambrus, Júlia Szenczi-Cseh, Vy Vy N. Doan, Zsuzsanna Domak, Tímea Gönczöl, Anna Lörincz, Gabriella Miklós, Attila Nagy, Henriett Szemanné-Dobrik and Adrienn Vásárhelyi
Agrochemicals 2022, 1(1), 29-40; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals1010005 - 16 Dec 2022
Viewed by 1937
Abstract
The development of quality requirements for the analyses of chemical contaminants is reviewed from the formation of the first association of analytical chemists in 1884. Without attempting to give complete coverage, it is shown that the elaboration of quality systems is commanded by [...] Read more.
The development of quality requirements for the analyses of chemical contaminants is reviewed from the formation of the first association of analytical chemists in 1884. Without attempting to give complete coverage, it is shown that the elaboration of quality systems is commanded by the needs of the industry and international trade. Progress along the line of the initial inter-laboratory comparison, methods validated with collaborative tests, and development of internationally harmonized guidelines and protocols to perform complex studies aiming to improve the accuracy and reliability of the results facilitate international trade, and protect consumer health, as well as the environment. The international cooperation for limiting the replication of various (e.g., analytical, toxicological) tests is promoted by multilateral agreements that are also supported by legal obligations. Notwithstanding, the rapid development of requirements and guidance documents provides only the frame for obtaining accurate, defendable results. The production of such results is the duty of the laboratory management, analysts, and study personnel who play the decisive role and bear full responsibility for the samples analyzed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
7 pages, 267 KiB  
Review
Using Nitrogen for the Control of Stored Product Insects: One Single Application for Multiple Purposes
by Christos G. Athanassiou and Maria K. Sakka
Agrochemicals 2022, 1(1), 22-28; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals1010004 - 11 Oct 2022
Cited by 6 | Viewed by 2236
Abstract
Nitrogen treatment can be used as an alternative method to chemical control. Most of the research on nitrogen treatment mainly investigated the optimum concentration of oxygen level as well as duration as a means of insect control. Other parameters such as temperature and [...] Read more.
Nitrogen treatment can be used as an alternative method to chemical control. Most of the research on nitrogen treatment mainly investigated the optimum concentration of oxygen level as well as duration as a means of insect control. Other parameters such as temperature and different insect species have been extensively studied and recent research focus on the modelling of nitrogen concentration and the efficacy on commodity. In this paper, we briefly review the major parameters (temperature, oxygen level, relative humidity, exposure time) using nitrogen treatment against stored product insects. Exposure to different oxygen levels or different exposure times can remarkably change pest control mortality. Moreover, different insect species and life stages have differing susceptibility to nitrogen treatment. Finally, these studies are reviewed in this paper to illustrate that nitrogen treatment can be used as a part of an IPM strategy. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)

Other

Jump to: Research, Review

27 pages, 3356 KiB  
Concept Paper
Evaluation of Monitoring Data in Foods
by Árpád Ambrus, Júlia Szenczi-Cseh, Vy Vy N. Doan and Adrienn Vásárhelyi
Agrochemicals 2023, 2(1), 69-95; https://doi.org/10.3390/agrochemicals2010006 - 18 Jan 2023
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2491
Abstract
Pesticide residue monitoring data reflect the actual residues in foods as traded and are suitable for estimating consumers’ exposure, evaluating compliance with maximum residue limits, MRLs, and refining future risk-based sampling programmes. The long-term exposure (daily intake) is calculated from the national or [...] Read more.
Pesticide residue monitoring data reflect the actual residues in foods as traded and are suitable for estimating consumers’ exposure, evaluating compliance with maximum residue limits, MRLs, and refining future risk-based sampling programmes. The long-term exposure (daily intake) is calculated from the national or regional food consumption data and average residues in the edible portions of food. The non-detected residues may be counted as LOQ, 0.5 LOQ, or 0. The short-term intake is calculated from the large portion consumption of individual foods multiplied by the highest residue concentration found in them and the relevant variability factor. Dietary exposure to a pesticide residue may be characterised by the hazard quotient (HQ) and the hazard index (HI). Cumulative exposure should only be assessed for those compounds having the common mechanism of toxicity (cumulative assessment group, CAG). The number of residue data required for these assessments should be calculated with distribution-free statistics at the targeted confidence level. The proper evaluation of the numerous results can only be completed if they are electronically recorded and can be retrieved in specific formats. Our objectives are to present methods for consumer risk assessment, testing compliance with MRLs, and ranking commodities for risk-based sampling and to give examples of electronic processing of residue data. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Feature Papers to Celebrate the Inaugural Issue of Agrochemicals)
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