Photo: Iowa Soybean Association

ISA urges Congress to reaffirm pesticide preemption

November 17, 2022 | Brock Johnston

The Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) joined more than 300 agriculture, academic, environmental and other stakeholder groups this week calling on Congress to reaffirm federal pesticide preemption on labeling and packaging. The groups warn that failure to uphold this position could have harmful consequences on food security, public health, the environment, and other applications where pesticides have proven to be beneficial.

“Science-based crop protection tools are critical to the competitiveness and profitability of Iowa’s soybean farmers,” said Michael Dolch, ISA director of public affairs.

Under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act, states are prohibited from imposing or continuing any requirements for labeling or packaging that are different or additional from those required by the federal government. However, states have sought to impose health claim label requirements contrary to federal findings in recent years.

“A state-by-state patchwork approach that contradicts the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) own science-based process and findings has far-reaching implications that Congress should take seriously,” says Dolch. “Conflicting state labels jeopardize both access and availability to these tools and threaten agriculture’s role in protecting both the food supply and the environment.”

The letter, submitted Tuesday, calls on Congress to reaffirm that states may not impose additional labeling or packaging requirements that conflict with federal findings.

While the letter did not state specifics as to how or when Congressional action should take place, the 332 stakeholder groups are clear that action is needed to prevent unfound interpretation of what the Act states.

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