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Chemical Regulator Proposes Restrictions on Dichlorvos to Protect Human Health

3 June 2008

Ref: 2008/07

The Australian Pesticides and Veterinary Medicines Authority (APVMA) has today released its preliminary review findings of dichlorvos, an organophosphorus insecticide commonly used for the control of a large variety of insects in storage areas in domestic, commercial and industrial premises.
APVMA spokesperson Dr Simon Cubit said that the APVMA is proposing to disallow several current uses of the chemical and strengthen safety directions to protect human health and safety, and the environment.

‘The review found that there was insufficient data for the APVMA to be satisfied there was adequate protection for people in relation to worker exposure, exposure arising from some domestic uses, and residues in some food commodities,’ Dr Cubit said.

In the absence of this information, the APVMA therefore proposes to cancel several uses including, but not limited to post-harvest uses on pulses, broadacre application to avocados, mechanical application to grains, and uses in enclosed spaces.

‘The APVMA also found that the safety directions on dichlorvos product labels do not conform to current safety standards and nor do labels contain adequate information to protect the environment’, Mr Cubit said

‘Accordingly, the APVMA proposes to add new instructions to improve safety to workers and the environment’, he said.

The dichlorvos review was prompted by concerns relating to human health, worker health and safety and the environment.

The preliminary review findings report flags proposed regulatory actions. The APVMA seeks comment from the general public, the agricultural chemicals industry and chemical users before any final decision on review outcomes is made.

The preliminary review report containing an assessment of the chemical and a full list of proposed regulatory actions can be accessed at Background information is also available.

The APVMA invites comment by 3 September 2008.


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