Illinois Fertilizer & Chemical Association
Supply · Service · Stewardship

Chlorpyrifos workshops reach beyond one pesticide

The discussion is too little too late for many in the ag community. They had the opportunity to share their disappointment recently that the California Environmental Protection Agency did not open up a broader conversation about alternatives to chlorpyrifos before it made the decision last year to cancel product registrations.
The agency’s Department of Pesticide Regulation, in partnership with CDFA, held three public workshops this month “to hear ideas about how farming communities can transition away from the use of the pesticide chlorpyrifos,” according to a December press release.
The conversations, however, focused on how the agencies can better implement new pesticide regulations in the future. Some participants traveled hours to offer input on what was believed to be a list of suggested alternatives delivered by the Chlorpyrifos Alternatives Working Group, which the agencies had commissioned for that purpose. Instead, the moderator of the workshops, Joseph McIntyre, whose company Ag Innovations is also facilitating the working group, announced the recommendations would not come until April.
This led to harsh criticism from Roger Isom, the CEO and President of the Western Agricultural Processors Association (WAPA), who called the Fresno workshop “an utter farce” and “a complete travesty,” in a WAPA statement. Isom said it served only for the agencies to check a box on outreach and for environmental activists to “lambast farmers with accusations of corporate greed and spraying indiscriminately.” He was angered the workshops did not “solve the immediate problem of the loss of chlorpyrifos in the short term.”
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