EPA Revokes Use of Chlorpyrifos on all Food/Feed Crops

Cecil Tharp, MSU Extension Pesticide Education Specialist

View Original Ag Alert

In August 2021, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued a final rule revoking all tolerances for pesticides containing chlorpyrifos. As a result, all tolerances of chlorpyrifos were revoked on February 28, 2022.Chlorpyrifos is a common organophosphate active ingredient used in many pesticide products for managing insect pests in a wide array of agriculture and non-agriculture areas.

Some pesticide products containing chlorpyrifos* include:

  • Bolten®
  • Drexel®
  • Chlorpyrifos® 4E-AG
  • Lorsban® 4E
  • Vesper®
  • Cobalt®
  • Dursban® XP
  • Govern® 4E
  • Pyrofos® 20
  • Warhawk®

*Products listed are not comprehensive, nor does this imply whether select products contain food/non-food uses related to legal use in the state. See product label for more information.

Common Montana agriculture crops impacted include alfalfa, corn, soybeans, fruit/nut trees, and wheat. The EPA’s decision was based on a response to the ninth circuit court’s order directing the EPA to respond to a petition to revoke all tolerances of chlorpyrifos because they were not safe. The EPA found that registered uses result in exposures exceeding safe levels of exposure due to the neurotoxic effects of chlorpyrifos and potential association of chlorpyrifos in neurodevelopmental effects in children. Once again, all food/feed uses of chlorpyrifos are no longer permitted as of February 28th, 2022. Some examples of non-food/feed use of chlorpyrifos include:

  1. Ornamentals
  2. Fruit/nut trees if applications are made to non-bearing trees (no fruit/nuts on tree and will not bear within one year).
  3. Forest Trees
  4. Ear tags containing chlorpyrifos may be used on beef and non-lactating dairy cattle, and on cattle in mating and cow-calf operations, if the animals are not offered for slaughter within one year of tag removal. Operators should maintain records to capture dates of ear tag removal and when animals are sent to slaughter.
  5. Crops for seed production (i.e. Alfalfa, Grass).
  6. Turf
  7. Other non-food/feed locations as available on the product label (i.e. sod, industrial sites, public health, un-grazed pasture or rangeland).

For clarity food/feed uses may include such crops as alfalfa, apple, greenhouse food crops, bean, beet, corn, legumes, mint, pea, tree nuts, and wheat. This includes seed treatments of crops and some commercial livestock uses including cattle ear tags (unless not for slaughter for one year), poultry houses, turkey barns, swine barns and dairy barns. 

Options on Unused Stocks of Chlorpyrifos

All tolerances for chlorpyrifos expired on February 28, 2022. Anyone in possession of chlorpyrifos products for use on food/feed should discontinue use on food/feed. You may continue to use the product for any non-food uses listed on the label.

For More Information

See the EPA news release or the EPA Frequent Questions About the Chlorpyrifos 2021 Final Rule for additional information. For other questions related to chlorpyrifos contact Cecil Tharp, MSU Extension Pesticide Education Specialist at 406-994-5067 or [email protected].


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