APVMA: Australia Bans Toxic Herbicide 2,4-D Products

Posted on Aug 24 2013 - 6:00pm by Sustainable Pulse

As part of the ongoing review of 2,4-D, the Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) has today cancelled the registration of 11 high volatile ester products (HVE) products and two active constituents.

The decision means:

  • supply of the cancelled 2,4-D HVE active constituent is to cease immediately (21 August 2013)
  • from 31 August 2013 the supply of product containing 2,4-D HVE manufactured up to 21 August 2013 is to cease
  • people can use products they have already purchased up until 31 August 2014 under the same permit instructions (PER14329) which restricts use to winter only and under strict conditions
  • use of these products after 31 August 2014 will be illegal.

The APVMA suspended registrations and label approvals of 2,4-D products containing high volatile ester forms in 2006. This was on the basis of environmental concerns about off-target damage to nearby crops, vegetation and the environment due to its ability to easily evaporate and be carried long distances under certain conditions.

Tight restrictions on the use of 2,4-D HVE products have been in place since 2006 while data about the environmental impact was generated under Australian conditions. The latest assessment of data from the Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPAC) determined the risks of the use of 2,4-D HVE products under the suspended label instructions are unacceptable and cannot be mitigated.

Registrants and approval holders were notified last month of the APVMA’s intention to cancel the registration of the products and the active constituents used in the products. The DSEWPAC report was also published on the APVMA website in July.

This action completes the review for the high volatile ester forms of 2,4-D.

2,4-D is a herbicide used to control weeds in crops, commercial and industrial areas, turf, forestry and waterways. There are now 220 registered 2,4-D products in Australia, with sales representing about 7–8% of all herbicide sales.

Further information:

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