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CCOF Comments on Inert Ingredients in Pesticides

by Rebekah Weber |

CCOF submitted a written comment to the National Organic Program (NOP) on inert ingredients in pesticides. The NOP sought input on how to update the organic regulations, which currently reference outdated Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) policy on inert ingredients in pesticides. Inert ingredients are any substance other than the active ingredient in a pesticide product, including solvents, diluents, stabilizers, and preservatives. An updated NOP standard is important to preserve tools organic farmers rely on and to create a path forward for companies to research and develop softer pesticides permitted for use in organic production.

CCOF highlighted that any change to organic regulations must be pragmatic to implement, minimize disruption to organic producers’ access to critical tools, and align with the Organic Food Production Act. We worked closely with CCOF members and organic sector leaders on our comment letter.

CCOF recommends that the NOP adopt EPA’s updated policy by permitting specific inert ingredients, including in minimum-risk pesticide products and inert ingredients of semiochemical dispensers limited only for use in passive pheromone dispensers. In addition, CCOF recommends that the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB) conduct a categorical review of these inert ingredients at each Sunset Review. We also recommend NOSB develop and review a list of exceptions of inert ingredients that would be prohibited for use in pesticides for organic production.

We will continue to work with our members and organic sector leaders to update obsolete regulatory references on the NOP National List.