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Chlorpyrifos Update: Ban Not in Effect Yet for Citrus

Ernie NeffPesticides, Regulation

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An update on the use of the insecticide chlorpyrifos in Florida citrus was provided in the November 2021 issue of Citrus from the Ridge to the Valley, the Central Florida citrus Extension newsletter. In August, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it will stop the use of the insecticide on all food. Excerpts from the Extension newsletter’s discussion about the use of the insecticide in Florida citrus follow.

First, chlorpyrifos is not banned at this time (10/29/21) for Florida citrus. The tolerances for chlorpyrifos have been revoked six months from the issuance of the EPA’s final rule. Six months from the final rule puts the date at Feb. 28, 2022 (as listed in the document). After this date, any residues of chlorpyrifos found on fruit would then need to fall under the current existing use of the material consistent with the following of a legal chlorpyrifos citrus label. In other words, if the label is still valid, applications of the material can be made following that valid label prior to the revocation of tolerance date, but not past that date. Residues detected from applications after this date would render the crop adulterated with an illegal pesticide residue. Notice it is the residues from an application made after the date of tolerance revocation. Additional information can be found on the EPA’s chlorpyrifos website.

The EPA has also indicated that a Notice of Intent to Cancel (NOIC), when issued, will be published in the Federal Register. As of now, the NOIC has not occurred, so the existing labels are still current and legal at this time (10/29/21). Also, at this time, no action has been taken on chlorpyrifos for non-food uses. The tolerance is for food crop uses. So, non-food crop uses have not been affected at this time. I would strongly suggest that if you have stocks of chlorpyrifos, you review the above materials and know your options during this phasing out period for chlorpyrifos.

Source: University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences

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