EPA Bans Brain-Damaging Chlorpyrifos in Food

Agency still allowing uses that risk health of children, workers and endangered species

Washington, DC – The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) today announced its decision to revoke all food tolerances of the brain-damaging insecticide chlorpyrifos. This decision is the result of an order from the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals for the EPA to update its restrictions on chlorpyrifos. However the EPA will continue to allow certain non-food uses of chlorpyrifos, such as on golf courses.

Two EPA risk assessments, relying on decades of scientific literature, supported an original recommendation from agency scientists to disallow the use of chlorpyrifos on food. The EPA was set to ban chlorpyrifos before President Trump took office in 2016. Shortly after, former EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt announced the agency would not ban chlorpyrifos following a $1 million dollar donation to the Trump Inauguration Organizing Committee from the CEO of Dow Chemical, chlorpyrifos’ primary manufacturer.

Decades of science has clearly linked chlorpyrifos to brain damage in children, and it poses a threat to farmworkers and more than 1,200 endangered species.

Jason Davidson, Senior Food and Agriculture Campaigner with Friends of the Earth, issued the following statement in response:

President Biden’s EPA is finally reversing one of many horrific Trump administration actions that prioritized pesticide industry profits over our health and environment. But the EPA must now finish the job and follow sound science by banning all uses of chlorpyrifos.

Communications contact: Kerry Skiff, (202) 222-0723, [email protected]

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