Federal Pesticide Registration
The United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates pesticides under broad authority granted in two major statutes, the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide & Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Federal Food, Drug and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA). These statutes were subsequently amended by the Food Quality Protection Act (FQPA) of 1996.
FIFRA requires that all pesticide products sold or distributed in the United States are registered (licensed) with the EPA. Concurrently, FFDCA requires that all pesticides registered for use in or on food must have an established tolerance (a tolerance is the maximum permissible level of pesticide residues allowed in or on commodities for human food and animal feed). Check out EPA's website for general information on the pesticide registration process.
EPA is in the process now of 'reregistering' older pesticides. EPA has published an online schedule of the Reregistrations & Tolerance Reassessments that they will be issuing from 2004 through 2008. Reregistration decisions made by EPA are detailed in technical documents as well as some chemical-specific fact sheets. The public is kept abreast of EPA's progress in reregistration through various types of reregistration status reports.
Under Section 3 of FIFRA, EPA can register pesticides for use throughout the United States. This type of Federal pesticide registration is commonly called a "Section 3". This includes both 'general use' pesticides and 'restricted use' pesticide products, where only certified pesticide applicators may use the restricted use products. For a listing of Federal restricted use pesticides, consult the Cooperative Extension, Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Illinois report entitled 'Federally Registered Restricted Use Pesticides'; this document is current to August 2003.
The Pesticide Applicator Training pages of this website outline the specific requirements of pesticide applicator certification in New Jersey.
New Jersey Pesticide Registration
In addition, States, Tribes, and Territories can can require additional registration or place further restrictions on pesticides of EPA-registered products used or sold within their own jurisdictions. In New Jersey, the state lead agency is the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Pesticide manufacturers must register each product that will be sold in New Jersey with the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection. Specifically, State pesticide control regulations section 7:30:2.1 (a) states:
"No person shall hold, use, distribute, sell, or offer for sale within this State or deliver for transportation or transport in intrastate commerce or between points within this State through any point outside this State any pesticide unless it is currently registered with the Department."
Since New Jersey has such a wide variety of pesticide uses, there are approximately 12, 2000 registered pesticides that can legally be used in New Jersey. The registration of a pesticide product is ultimately the responsibility of the company whose name appears on the label (the Product Registrant). In New Jersey please contact the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection at (609) 984-6507 if you have specific questions on pesticides registered for use in New Jersey.
New Jersey Pesticide Control regulations [N.J.A.C. 7:30-4.4(b)] requires that anyone distributing a restricted use pesticide (whether federal or state restricted) to a retail dealer or distributor for resale, is to inform the purchaser that it is a restricted use pesticide in New Jersey. For a listing of New Jersey products that are classified as State or Federal restricted use products, consult the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection at (609) 984-6507, or see it's website listing of New Jersey restricted use pesticides by EPA registration number.
However, EPA can authorize limited use of unregistered pesticides, or pesticides registered for other uses to address emergencies and special local needs. There are three types of situations in New Jersey (as in other States) in which allowances are made:
Under the authority of §24(c) of Federal Insecticide, Fungicide & Rodenticide Act, States may register an additional use of a federally registered pesticide product, or a new end use product to meet special local needs, as long as there is both a demonstrated "special local need," and a tolerance, exemption from a tolerance, or other clearance under the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act. EPA is responsible for overseeing the general program and reviews these registrations. For those interested in detailed technical information about this, see EPA's 1995 Guidance Document on Special Local Needs State Registrations which provides guidance for the registration of an additional or new use of a pesticide product under the special local needs provision as stated in Section 24(c) of FIFRA.
In New Jersey, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection has the authority to issue special local need pesticide registrations (also known as "24C's"). We have compiled a current listing of 24C special local need pesticide registrations for New Jersey for quick reference.
Under the authority of §18 of Federal Insecticide, Fungicide & Rodenticide Act, EPA can allow State and Federal agencies to permit the unregistered use of a pesticide in a specific geographic area for a limited time if emergency (or in some cases crisis) pest conditions exist. EPA's background document, "Section 18s Program and Proposed Reforms," details proposed changes to the Section 18 process.
Typically, a need for an emergency exemption arises when growers and others encounter a pest problem on a site (in most cases, a crop) for which there is either no registered pesticide available, or for which there is a registered pesticide that would be effective but is not yet approved for use on that particular site. Also, exemptions can be approved for public health and quarantine reasons. Most requests for emergency exemptions are made by state lead agricultural agencies, although the United States Department of Agriculture and United States Department of Interior also request exemptions.
In New Jersey, the state lead agency is the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection (NJDEP). The NJDEP applies to the EPA for an emergency exemption for the pesticide product to deal with the emergency pest condition. The exemption (also known as a 'Section 18') will be categorized as specific, quarantine, or public health. If approved, the EPA then issues the NJDEP a letter granting an exemption from registration for the pesticide product for a prescribed time period.
If a need is immediate, the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection may issue a crisis exemption under Section 18 of FIFRA which allows the use of a pesticide product to deal with the emergency condition for no longer than 15 days. The state notifies EPA of this action prior to issuing the crisis, and EPA performs a cursory review of the use to ensure there are no concerns. If concerns are noted, EPA confers with the State, and under extreme cases may not allow a crisis to be declared. If the state follows up the crisis with, or has already submitted, an emergency exemption request (specific, quarantine, or public health), the use may continue under the crisis exemption until the EPA has made a decision on the request. EPA must establish the appropriate tolerance(s) for the crisis and/or specific exemption use.
Both specific and crisis exemptions that have been granted in New Jersey are compiled online in a listing of Section 18 emergency exemptions .
This site is supported, in part, with funding from the Northeastern IPM Center.