EPA recently identified 72 inert ingredients that it is removing from its approved list for use in pesticide products. While removal of these ingredients from the approved inert ingredient list does not, by itself, restrict their use in a pesticide product, it does change the way a pesticide registration containing such inert ingredients will be processed in the future. Once removed from the approved list, an inert ingredient is considered a “new” inert ingredient, which must be approved by EPA before it can be included in a registered pesticide product. The type of data needed to evaluate a “new” inert ingredient may include, among other things, studies to evaluate potential carcinogenicity, adverse reproductive effects, developmental toxicity, genotoxicity, and environmental effects associated with any chemical that is persistent or bioaccumulative. As such, removal of these inert ingredients from the approved list will increase the cost (and time) for companies seeking to use them in pesticides in the future.
While EPA’s records indicate that none of the 72 inert ingredients are used in currently-registered pesticide products, pesticide manufacturers should nonetheless confirm that their products do not contain such ingredients. In addition, companies seeking in the future to register pesticide products containing any of the 72 inert ingredients should plan accordingly to develop the necessary data to demonstrate to EPA’s satisfaction that the use of such inert ingredients is safe.
A summary of all 72 inert ingredients removed from EPA’s approved list can be accessed here.