Important EPA Label Revisions: Are You in Compliance?

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Hopefully, some of you reading this may recall previous articles on recent Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) revisions to pesticide labels and Worker Protection Standards (WPS) for farms, nurseries, and greenhouse operations regarding respirators. Newly registered dicamba (Engenia, FeXapan, XtendiMax, and Tavium) and 2,4-D (Enlist Duo and Enlist One) products labeled for in-season, over the top application of Xtend or Enlist cotton and soybean are now registered as Restricted Use Pesticides (RUP),  meaning only certified or licensed applicators can purchase and legally apply them. In an effort to reduce damage to sensitive crops from off-site movement of these products, the product label requires that ALL applicators must attend Auxin Herbicide Best Management Practices Training annually. North Carolina Cooperative Extension has been tasked with the responsibility of offering this statewide training once again this year. A regional Auxin Herbicide Training will be offered at 4 p.m. on March 4, 2020, at the Southeastern NC Agriculture Events Center located at 1027 Highway  74, Lumberton. You can find a complete list of training opportunities at:  2020 Schedule Auxin Herbicides Best Management Practices

The dicamba products mentioned will require extensive record-keeping which applicators must keep on file for two years. In addition to standard restricted use pesticide product record-keeping, applicators also need to record the spray system cleanout procedure used, beginning and ending times, air temperature, wind direction, wind speed, nozzle type and pressure, tank-mix products, and date of sensitive crop registry and neighboring field survey. Record keeping templates can be found on the Auxin Resources page.

Another important EPA label revision is for all products containing paraquat-dichloride (paraquat), including but not limited to trade names Gramoxone, Para-SHOT, Parazone, Quick-Quat, Firestorm, or Helmquat. New labeling of these products require that any person who intends to use paraquat must be a licensed or certified NCDA&CS applicator and MUST successfully complete the new How to Safely Use and Handle Paraquat-Containing Pesticides Training. “Uses” includes mixing and loading the pesticide, applying the pesticide, and other pesticide-related activities, such as transporting or storing opened pesticide containers, cleaning equipment, and disposing of excess pesticides, pesticide containers, and other paraquat-containing materials. The paraquat training certificate is not required for purchasing the product, but a RUP certificate or pesticide license is required before a purchase can be made from a licensed dealer. Non-certified persons working under the supervision of a certified applicator are prohibited from using paraquat including any of the “use” activities mentioned above. Once the certified applicator successfully completes the training with a 100 percent score on the final assessment, a certificate will be automatically generated. Per the new labeling, applicators are required to retain certificates of training completion in their records. The training must be retaken every three years. Training can be completed online or face-to-face at any approved pesticide training provided by N.C. Cooperative Extension. In-Person training has been scheduled for March 12, 2020, at 7 p.m. at the O. P. Owens Agriculture Center, 455 Caton Road, Lumberton.  The EPA is allowing the sale of paraquat that is already in the supply channels that do not have the new labels. Paraquat products with old labeling will not require the new training requirement.

The use of brand names and any mention or listing of commercial products or services in this publication does not imply endorsement by North Carolina Cooperative Extension nor discrimination against similar products or services not mentioned. Individuals who use agricultural chemicals are responsible for ensuring that the intended use complies with current regulations and conforms to the product label. Be sure to obtain current information about usage regulations and examine a current product label before applying any chemical. For assistance or more information, contact Mac Malloy, Extension Field Crops Agent, at 910-671-3276, by E-mail at, or visit our website.

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