On December 22, 2009, the EPA announced that it will begin accepting public comments on its proposal to require pesticide product manufacturers, including the makers of flea and tick control products, to disclose inert ingredients on their labels. The manufacturers of pesticide products have long fought to keep such information off of product labels by claiming that it is "confidential business information" (trade secrets).
Currently, pesticide makers must label the "active" ingredients in a pesticide product, but they are not required to identify the so called inert (or other) ingredients, which may be just as toxic (or more toxic) than the active ingredients. Inert ingredients are often added to increase the toxicity of the product’s active ingredients. Inert ingredients can be added to enhance dermal penetration and inhibit metabolism. Unfortunately, most of the EPA’s risk assessments, which are required to register a pesticide product, only take into consideration the toxicity of the active ingredient — not the full pesticide formulation.
For more information on inert ingredients and their health implications, go to:
For more information on the EPA’s proposal, go to:
For detailed information on the EPA’s proposal, including possible options, go to:
The EPA’s proposal outlines general options for inert disclosure on pesticide labels, including mandating disclosure only of potentially hazardous ingredients; mandating disclosure of most or all inert ingredient identities, regardless of hazard; and non-regulatory voluntary disclosure initiatives by pesticide registrants. The proposal solicits ideas for both regulatory and non-regulatory approaches and sets forth a series of questions for comment. EPA believes participation and comment by the public is important for developing workable and effective solutions.
Public comments must be received by the EPA on or before February 22, 2010.
To submit a comment to the EPA on the above proposal, go to:
Comments submitted to the EPA are available for public viewing here:
This issue affects your ability to independently assess the health implications of pesticide products that you and your family may be exposed to. Please let the EPA
know that full disclosure of inert ingredients is important to you!
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