EPA Issues New Rodenticide Regs.; Manufacturers Must Respond by Sept. 2

New safety measures announced by EPA require that ten rodenticides used in bait products marketed to consumers be enclosed in bait stations, making the pesticide inaccessible to children and pets. The measures also prohibit the sale of loose bait, such as pellets, for use in homes. According to EPA, the new measures will protect children from accidental exposure to rodent-control products, and will also reduce the risk of accidental poisonings of pets and wildlife.

"The new restrictions will better protect our children, pets and wildlife from thousands of accidental exposures that occur every year," said EPA Assistant Administrator Jim Gulliford. "These practical and low cost measures provide protection while ensuring rodent control products will continue to be effective and affordable for all consumers."

Rodenticide products containing brodifacoum, bromadiolone, difethialone, and difenacoum are known to pose the greatest risk to wildlife and will no longer be allowed to be sold or distributed in the consumer market, EPA said, noting that manufacturers must respond by Sept. 2, 2008. Bait stations will be required for all outdoor, above-ground uses for products containing these ingredients. EPA said it believes that these steps will significantly reduce the amount of product in the environment, providing additional protection for wildlife from poisonings by these more toxic and persistent products.

EPA is requiring that companies manufacturing these products respond to EPA within 90 days regarding their intention to comply with the new requirements. Persons holding a manufacturing-use or end-use registration for a rodenticide product containing one of the active ingredients covered by the risk mitigation decision must provide a letter to EPA on or before Sept. 2, 2008, declaring an intent to comply or not comply with the risk mitigation measures described in the document.

Covered active ingredients include brodifacoum, bromadiolone, difethialone, difenacoum, chlorophacinone, diphacinone (and its sodium salt), warfarin (and its sodium salt), zinc phosphide, bromethalin, and cholecalciferol.

This 90-day response letter must indicate, for each of the registrants' registered pesticide products, whether the registrant intends to amend the registration to conform to the risk mitigation decision. EPA may initiate cancellation actions against products for which it does not receive notification of the registrant's intent to comply with the risk mitigation measures described in this document.

For each registered product for which a registrant declares its intent not to comply (i.e., not to amend labeling and/or packaging and not to develop a replacement bait station product), the company needs to include a request to cancel that product voluntarily under FIFRA Section 6(f)(1). Failure to make such a voluntary cancellation request will result in additional regulatory action. For more information, visit www.epa.gov/pesticides/reregistration/rodenticides/rodenticides_mitigation_decision.pdf.

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