Neonicotinoid (neonic) pesticides have been facing intense scrutiny because of their potential role in pollinator insect population declines. Research has shown that insecticide use in general has resulted in $284 million per year in damages to honeybee and pollinator services in the United States. This is especially worrying because food supply would fail to meet increasing global food demand without pollinator insects.
Consumer awareness of neonic pesticides increases the purchase likelihood for plants that are labeled “neonic-free,” and, as consumer awareness of neonics increases, demand for plants may decrease if there is limited availability of neonic-free options. This 5-page fact sheet written by Hayk Khachatryan and Alicia Rihn and published by the Food and Resource Economics Department explains the practical implications for growers, retailers, and policy makers and describes how these stakeholders can benefit from increased awareness of this important new market niche.