Gowan buys Dow’s Gavel potato fungicide

Pesticide firm Gowan Co. will soon own Dow AgroSciences’ potato fungicide brand Gavel 75DF as part of a worldwide deal for Dow’s business in Gavel’s active ingredient.

Starting Aug. 1 this year, Gowan will be the sole marketer of Gavel, which is registered in Canada for use by potato growers to control early and late blight and to suppress tuber blight. It’s also registered here for control of downy mildew in grapes, except in British Columbia.

The brand’s sale is part of Gowan’s purchase of the worldwide rights to Dow AgroSciences’ zoxamide fungicide business, for an undisclosed sum.

Gavel, Dow’s only zoxamide product in Canada, is 8.3 per cent zoxamide and 66.7 per cent mancozeb. Dow’s other zoxamide brands worldwide include Zoxium, Electis, Unikat and Harpon, used to control oomycete fungi in potato, vine and vegetable crops.

In Canada, Dow AgroSciences will continue to sell and stock Gavel at Dow retailers, warehouses and distribution points until Aug. 1. The product will also continue to qualify as part of the “Hot Potatoes” points program operated jointly by Dow and Bayer CropScience for 2007-08, but Dow will not market, advertise or promote Gavel after Aug. 1.

Dow AgroSciences Canada remains strongly committed to the Canadian horticulture crop protection market, communications manager Stan Audette said Friday, noting products such as the company’s new insecticide Delegate WG among other available fungicides, insecticides and herbicides.

“Due to the press of competing priorities for new product development, Dow AgroSciences, as a research-based company, has not been able to devote the time and resources needed to position zoxamide for optimal growth,” said David Hindes, Dow Agro’s global business leader for fungicides, in Gowan’s press release Thursday.

“We believe that zoxamide will be better positioned with Gowan, where it represents a better strategic fit with the company’s portfolio and general business direction.”

“The addition of zoxamide expands Gowan’s fungicide portfolio globally, and is consistent with our goal to identify important products that growers need,” said Matt Comer, global marketing manager for Gowan, based in Yuma, Arizona.

Gowan’s only other fungicide product available in Canada is Botran 75W, a dicloran product registered here as a pre-harvest treatment for peaches, onion, garlic, several types of beans, lettuce, greenhouse tomatoes and ornamentals such as roses.

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