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    Synthetic herbicides have revolutionised agricultural weed control. Herbicide resistance (HR) is a natural process through which weeds evolve to be no longer susceptible to a herbicide. Repeated use of similar herbicides can lead to the proliferation of resistant weed populations, with detrimental on-farm effects. To date, 267 weed species worldwide are resistant to at least one herbicide. Yet, achieving universal uptake of best practice principles to manage HR remains difficult. Historically not a high priority for New Zealand cropping farmers, resistance may be more prevalent than commonly assumed. This article contributes to emerging national management strategies and the international scholarship on the human dimensions of HR. Regarding resistance as a socio-biological challenge, we draw on qualitative social research with agricultural stakeholders in New Zealand's main cropping region to outline important psychosocial preconditions for effective resistance management. Our findings show that these preconditions include: influencing awareness and attitudes, knowledge and skills; approaching HR as a shared responsibility; and supporting long-term and holistic thinking. We conclude that these preconditions form the social foundations for agricultural stakeholders' capacity to enact best practice principles to continuously re-solve HR. This novel framing allows analytical differentiation between the capacity and ability to act, with practical recommendations and future research needing to address both components of effective HR management. Copyright: © 2023 Espig, Henwood. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


    Martin Espig, Roxanne J T Henwood. The social foundations for re-solving herbicide resistance in Canterbury, New Zealand. PloS one. 2023;18(6):e0286515

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    PMID: 37267239

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