Neonicotinoid Update

I just wanted to update you on some issues regarding neonicotinoids. Last week I posted a blog about concerns that neonics are having devastating effects on bee populations.

I decided to email some companies here in Ireland and the UK that supply seeds (both flowers and vegetables) to see whether any of their products contained neonics. A number of companies have not responded. However I did have some positive replies from others.

Unwin Seeds (in Ireland Woodies sell Unwin seeds ) were quick to respond that they do not use, nor have ever used neonicotinoid insecticides as a seed treatment in any of their seed ranges.

Thompson and Morgan also confirmed that they did not use any neonicotinoids on their seeds. However the person who replied did think that most insecticides containing neonicotinoid are now banned within the EU, which isn’t true as only three of the neonics chemical are only temporarily banned here.

Lidl are confirmed that their seeds were not treated.

De Ree UK also confirmed that their seeds were never coated with neonicotinoid chemicals.

Aldi asked for me to be more specific about the products but it is interesting that it was announced during the week that “Aldi Süd is the first big retailer in Europe to ban eight bee-harming pesticides from domestic fruits and vegetables produced for their markets.” This is  a huge step for a retailer and I hope it means their stores Europe wide will ban these projects. It is also setting a great example to other retailers. The Greenpeace press release also lists foods where these chemical s are being used. They include:


  • Thiamethoxam – applied to lettuce and endive
  • Chlorpyrifos, clothianidin – applied to kohlrabi, herbs, Brussels sprouts, head cabbage, cauliflower, and kale
  • Cypermethrin – applied to leek, head cabbage, and leguminous vegetables
  • Deltamethrin – applied to cauliflower, peppers, eggplant, zucchini/courgette, cucumber, pea, head cabbage, tomato, and lettuce
  • Imidacloprid – applied to apples, peaches, apricots, and lettuce


As consumers we can play a role here. Ask your retailers whether products they sell have been treated with neonics. Make a conscious effort to buy organic where you can. Or even better grow your own.

24 thoughts on “Neonicotinoid Update

  1. Miranda McCoy

    Well done on making the enquiries and hurrah for the companies that responded. Thank you for sharing and making us more aware of our earth friendly options. You are a star! xxx

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Julie

    Great post, I had been looking through some of the seed catalogues I have here to find any that are organically grown as I’d like to make a list of both organic seeds and organically grown plants. (There are a few listed on the soil association website). The answer from Aldi, sounds as if they are thorough and it is a massive step forward for a retailer to be banning 8 bee-harming pesticides. As well as the appalling harm to our invertebrates, why would anyone want to ingest these chemicals on their food.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Eliza Waters

    It makes sense to vote with our dollars/euros/pounds and buy from organic farmers. The companies using chemicals would get the message, but a letter or call letting them know you’re taking your business elsewhere might get the message delivered more quickly!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jane

    The direct approach & look at the facts you’ve found. It seems questioning retailers & searching out organically grown seeds & plants is the way to go. Good for you.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lori Fontanes

    Thank you for this info–another reason I choose organic seeds, too. Seeds are really the least expensive part of gardening anyway so worth it to pay a little more if necessary. BTW, I dislike the way industry calls this “seed treatment” as if it were a therapy or prescription. So Orwellian!

    Liked by 1 person


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