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U.S. EPA Cites Irrigation Equipment Company for Selling an Unregistered Pesticide

Release Date: 8/4/2003
Contact Information: Laura Gentile, 415-947-4227

SAN FRANCISCO -- The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today announced that it has fined a Fresno-based company $77,000 for selling an unregistered pesticide product widely used in commercial landscaping applications, a violation of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act.

The EPA cited Netafim, USA for selling replacement filters for its Techfilter product line, designed to deliver pesticide to irrigation systems, without registering the product with the EPA. Absent this registration, the EPA has not assessed the product to verify that the quantity and concentration of pesticide delivered is safe for public health and the environment.

"Companies must register their pesticides with the EPA," says Enrique Manzanilla, director of the EPA's Cross Media Division. "Without EPA registration, we have no information on the effects of this product, which could result in harm to public health and the environment."

The EPA will not register a pesticide until it has been tested to show that it will not pose an unreasonable risk when used according to the directions. The agency also makes sure that pesticide labels provide consumers with the information they need to use the products safely. Pesticides that have been registered with the agency will have an EPA registration number on the label.

The civil complaint, which is based on an April 2002 inspection by the California Department of Pesticide Regulation, requires that the company respond to the charges in the complaint by the end of August.