Last August, the EPA (Environmental Protection Agency) announced that all food tolerances for chlorpyrifos would be revoked. This will take effect on February 28, 2022. After the tolerances are revoked, applications of chlorpyrifos will render any food so treated as adulterated and unable to be sold. This was a long time coming and production of the chemical ceased a while back in anticipation of this regulatory action.
The reason for this action relates to public health concerns (potential neurodevelopmental effects) and effects of aggregate chlorpyrifos exposure in food, water, and residential exposure. This insecticide has been in use since 1965. A litigation has been tied up in the courts for several years, and we have been waiting for the EPA to act on the court decision.
What this means is that producers will not be able to apply their chlorpyrifos to food crops after February 28, 2022. Products affected include Lorsban, Cholpyrifos, Govern, Hatchet, Saurus, Vesper, Warhawk, Whirlwind, and Yuma, as well as premixes containing chlorpyrifos (such as Cobalt, Stallion, and Bolton). Applications to non-food crops is permitted so long as they are consistent with the respective labeling.
For more information on this EPA decision and the actions that have led to this, visit the EPA website’s press release, Frequent Questions about the Chlorpyrifos 2021 Final Rule.
Growers needing to dispose of existing supplies of chlorpyrifos should contact the Kentucky Department of Agriculture about the Agricultural Chemical Collections Program. There is NO COST to farmers to dispose of their old chemicals!