We’re not Cockroaches, EPA. Tell Us What’s in that Toxic Spray!

Take a close look at the fine print on a can of Raid, a bottle of Cutters, a jug of RoundUp, or virtually any pesticide on the market today, and you’ll see these words:  “Inert ingredients.”

Inert ingredients are the pesticide industry’s best-kept secret.

The Bad News

There are thousands of chemicals used as inerts in pesticides, and over the years, we’ve discovered what some of them are.  The truth is that many inert ingredients are neither chemically nor toxicologically inert. Some cause cancer, some cause genetic damage, some cause reproductive harm, and others cause a wide variety of other health problems.

For decades, EPA has routinely accepted the pesticide industry’s line that these ingredients are “confidential business information.” That’s a red herring.  Pesticide companies can easily test their competitors’ products to find out what’s inside them.  The reason that pesticide companies use the inert ingredient loophole is that they want to keep doctors, independent researchers, and you in the dark.

The Good News

The new, improved EPA recently announced that they are considering requiring pesticide companies to disclose inert ingredients. After years of advocacy by CEH and other organizations, the agency has decided that “revealing inert ingredients will help consumers make informed decisions and will better protect public health and the environment.”

This is the opportunity that health advocates have been awaiting for over twenty years.

The next step:  until April 23, EPA is accepting public comments on the proposal, and you can play a vital role in this process.

Almost certainly, the pesticide industry will shout (and whine) from the rooftops that disclosing secret ingredients will hurt their business, stop innovation in the pesticide industry, make pesticides less effective, raise the price of lettuce to twenty bucks a head, and turn your house into a cockroach haven.

What You Can Do

To do the right thing, EPA needs your support.  It’s crucial that the agency hear from you now to counter the self-serving and misleading pressure they’re getting from the pesticide industry. Please click here to read the letter we’ll send to EPA and add your name to it. We need to gather thousands of signatures, so please share this with all of your friends and family who care about health and the environment.

With your help, we can close the pesticide industry’s inert ingredient loophole.  It’s an opportunity we can’t afford to miss!