Uniroyal Chemical expects to market a new reduced risk miticide next season for use in California on grapes and stone fruit.

Acramite has been under review by the federal Environmental Protection Agency and the California Department of Pesticide Regulation for almost two years, and the company is expecting use approvals from both the state and federal agencies this fall.

The initial label will cover apples, pears, grapes, stone fruit (apricots, nectarines, peaches, plums/prunes), strawberries and hops, according to John Westcott, vice president of insecticides and acaricides for Uniroyal.

Charles Jackson, Uniroyal product development representative in Fresno, Calif., said Acramite would be used primarily as an early miticide against low populations with Uniroyal's other miticide, Omite, available for late season control, if necessary.

Jackson said Acramite 50W has demonstrated residual control of 30 days or longer.

Acramite is a new chemistry (carbazate) for mite control and will require only a half to one pound of formulated product per acre for control. This compares to the 7.5 to 8 pounds for Omite.

The new miticide will have only a four-hour re-entry period compared to up to 30 days for Omite on table grapes.

It also will have shorter post harvest intervals of from one day for strawberries; three days for stone fruit; seven days for apples and pears and 14 days for grapes.

As a chemistry classified as “reduced risk,” it also is easy on predacious mites and other mite predators.

It controls two-spotted, Pacific, strawberry and European red spider mites. It controls all motile mite forms at application and all nymphs, which hatch after application.

“Coverage is critical since this is a contact material, and requires a minimum of 50 gallons of water per acre,” said Jackson, who added that with thick canopies, 100 gallons of water is preferable, especially in areas with a history of mite problems.

Westcott said the new miticide will be labeled for use a maximum of one time per crop year as part of a resistance management program.

Labels for almonds, walnuts, pistachios, mint, eggplant, tomatoes and cucurbits are expected in the future. Jackson said a liquid formulation of Acramite would be marketed for cotton in 2003.