What is a Minimum Risk Pesticide?
A minimum risk pesticide is a product that is used for pest control. Like other alternative pesticides, minimum risk pesticides pose little to no risk to human health or the environment. The EPA has conducted studies on the ingredients in these pesticides and have found them to not be harmful or low in toxicity. They are exempt from product registration under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act 25(b) called FIFRA 25(b).
Because of this, minimum risk pesticides do not:
- Require EPA label approval
- Undergo EPA review
- Have label requirements for an EPA registration number
- Need to have a signal word or any personal protective equipment requirements on the label
Even though these products are exempt from the above four, they are still very regulated products because they are pesticides. The FIFRA 25(b) products must have:
- Active ingredients must be those included in the EPA-approved list.
- Inert ingredients can only be approved ingredients.
- All active and inert ingredients must be listed on the label and active ingredients must also include percentage by weight.
- The product cannot make claims that it controls or mitigates any organisms that pose a threat to human health or that carry specific diseases.
- The name and contact info of the company the product was produced for must be included on the label.
- The label cannot include false or misleading information.
- Always research the chemicals and active ingredients you are considering using in your home or yard.
- Always read the label before applying any pesticides (its a legal document).
- Always wear personal protective equipment when applying any pesticides, even those, like minimum risk pesticides, that don’t specifically require PPE.
US Environmental Protection Agency. Active Ingredients Eligible for Minimum Risk Pesticide Products.
US Environmental Protection Agency. Commonly Consumed Food Commodities.
US Environmental Protection Agency. Conditions for Minimum Risk Pesticides.
US Environmental Protection Agency. Minimum Risk Pesticide: Definition and Product Confirmation.