EPA gets tough with rat poison manufacturers
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced today that it is moving to ban the sale of “the most toxic” consumer rat and mouse poisons, as well as most loose bait and pellet products. The agency is also requiring that all newly registered rat and mouse poisons marketed to residential consumers be enclosed in bait stations so children and pets cannot access the pesticide. The new regulations will also protect wildlife that consume bait or poisoned rodents, the EPA said in its announcement.
Children are particularly at risk, the EPA noted, because the rat and mouse poisons are typically placed on floors, where young children sometimes place bait pellets in their mouths. The American Association of Poison Control Centers annually receives 12,000 to 15,000 reports of children under the age of six being exposed to these types of products.
In 2008, the EPA gave producers of rat and mouse poison until June 4, 2011, to research, develop and register new products that would be safer for children, pets and wildlife. Over the past three years, EPA has worked with a number of companies to achieve that goal, and there are now new products on the market with new bait delivery systems and less toxic baits that still provide effective rodent control, according to the EPA.
However, a handful of companies have advised the EPA that they do not plan to adopt the new safety measures, the EPA said. Consequently, the EPA intends to initiate cancellation proceedings under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, the federal pesticide law, against certain non-compliant products marketed by the following companies to remove them from the market:
• Woodstream Inc. (makers of Victor rodent control products)
• Spectrum Group (makers of Hot Shot rodent control products)
• Liphatech Inc. (makers of Generation, Maki, and Rozol rodent control products)
• Reckitt Benckiser Inc. (makers of D-Con, Fleeject, and Mimas rodent control products)
In addition to requiring more protective bait stations and prohibiting pellet formulations, the EPA intends to ban the sale and distribution of rodenticide products containing brodifacoum, bromadiolone, difethialone and difenacoum directly to residential consumers because of their toxicity and the secondary poisoning hazards to wildlife. These rodenticides will still be available for use by professional pest control applicators and in agricultural settings.
For more information on rat and mouse products that meet EPA’s safety standard, click here.
This ban makes full sense to
This ban makes full sense to me although I personally think that's it's not the poison to blame but the irresponsible parents that put deadly poison on the floor forgetting that their children may get exposed. I am all in favor of advanced pest control methods as long as my kids stay safe.
Alan Pryor of Liphatech
Alan Pryor of Liphatech responds: Reckitt Benckiser will continue to market their d-DON pellets (Brodifacoum) and mini-blocks (Difethialone) until EPA files a Notice to cancel the d-CON registrations. By the way, before EPA can issues a Cancellation Notice, EPA must notify USDA, HHS and a FIFRA Science Advisory Panel ---- this notification process is completely transparent and will take about four months to complete. Once the Cancelation Notices are filed with the registrants, the proceedings will move to an Administrative Law Judge and could take up to 2 years before a decision is rendered. If, for example, Reckitt Benckiser is not satisfied with the result, a Federal lawsuit against EPA would likely be filed. Bottom line, the battle lines have been drawn and the legal battle with move forward. But, for the moment, retailers may continue to sell the existing d-CON products because these products are legally registered. The EPA cannot simply wish the products out of the retail marketplace.
Readers Respond: Safety in the store
An article about dangerous home improvement activities generated this letter about unattended children inside stores.
"One of the biggest issues I find with customer safety are customers who do not mind their children. Kids think hardware and home improvement stores are playgrounds, and parents think the store is the babysitter. As a responsible retailer, it is your job to educate the parents on the dangers of not supervising their own children. Your staff cannot be the babysitter, the nanny or the entertainer. Your employees have difficult jobs, selling to customers and the never-ending task lists that must be completed to maintain your business, which is hard enough without having to keep saying, ‘Johnny, don’t climb up on that’ or ‘Suzie don’t crawl in there’ every five minutes. My approach is simple and direct. I tell the parents that I am not the babysitter and that it is their responsibility to mind their kids.
I even had customers leave their children in my store and go to another store, expecting my staff to watch them. This is an accident waiting to happen."
— Rocco Arena
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LACN to hold “Second Growth” Summer Conference
Lumberyard executives from California and Nevada will learn about global demand for wood supply and its impact on markets in the United States during the Second Growth Summer Conference July 21 to 22 hosted by the Lumber Association of California & Nevada (LACN).
The Second Growth series is designed for lumber executives aged 40 and under — although the 40-and-over crowd is also welcome at the events.
The July 21 to 22 event will be held at Rancho Las Palmas Resort in Rancho Mirage, Calif. Gordon Culbertson of Forest 2 Market will lead a session called "The China Syndrome; how will historical trends affecting timber resources and growth in developing countries shape future US markets?" Another session will focus an mentoring, and allow discussion on the past, present and future direction of the industry.
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