2013 Agrichemical Management Bureau Annual Report

Pesticide Special Registrations

Normally, pesticides are federally registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and labeled for use in specific locations (such as weed control in cranberries) with specific directions and restrictions. However, sometimes crop producers and other pesticide users encounter pest problems that cannot be sufficiently managed using available EPA-registered pesticides with the corresponding directions and restrictions. Examples of such pest problems include a pest developing resistance to existing pesticides, unexpected weather resulting in increased pest populations, the cancellation of previously effective pesticides, or the emergence of a new pest for which existing pesticides are not effective or not labeled for use in the needed locations.

The DATCP Pesticide Special Registrations program responds to emergency and non-emergency pest management needs of Wisconsin’s agricultural producers. Most requests pertain to minor food crops, such as cranberries and onions, where effective pesticide products are not yet available.

Emergency requests are prepared and submitted to DATCP by technical experts, typically crop/pest researchers at the University of Wisconsin. Non-emergency requests are prepared and submitted by pesticide manufacturers or labelers, with the assistance of technical experts. If a request is authorized, pesticide users must obtain, and have in their possession at the time of application, authorized special use directions to legally use pesticide products for the requested purposes.

The department processes two types of requests for pest control: emergency exemptions and special local need (SLN) registrations.

Emergency exemptions are authorized directly by the EPA under section 18 of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). They provide time-limited use of specific pesticide products to manage urgent, non-routine pest situations for which there are no sufficient, available EPA-registered pesticides. Section 18 emergency exemptions are intended to prevent significant economic loss, prevent significant health risks posed to humans or other animals, or address crises of imminent threat. For food or feed uses, EPA establishes time-limited tolerances that allow certain amounts of the pesticide to be present in or on the food or feed. Emergency exemptions are authorized for up to one year at a time.

SLN registrations are authorized directly by DATCP under ch. ATCP 29.72, Wis. Adm. Code and section 24(c) of FIFRA and subsequently reviewed by EPA. This type of special request is intended to meet a special local need in Wisconsin, which is a current or imminent pest problem that cannot be adequately controlled by the use of any available federally-registered pesticide product. SLN registrations are authorized for up to five years at a time.

Visit this web page for a list of Section 18 emergency exemptions and Section 24(c)/SLN registrations currently authorized for Wisconsin.

FIFRA Section 18 Emergency Exemption Program Training Resource

DATCP Pesticide Special Registrations program staff assisted with creating and editing the content of a web-based training resource for Section 18 emergency exemptions. It will assist states or federal agencies to determine when it is appropriate to request a Section 18 emergency exemption from EPA and what a complete application includes. Other stakeholders in this process will find this resource helpful to better understand the purposes and processes of the Section 18 program.

The University of California - Davis Extension program developed the resource through funding provided by EPA, in collaboration with EPA and state pesticide agency staff. 

The resource was completed in 2013 and is now available online.  

Experimental Use Permits (EUPs)

The program also processes requests to conduct experimental research with pesticides in Wisconsin. EUPs are authorized directly by DATCP under ch. ATCP 29.71, Wis. Adm. Code and section 5 of FIFRA.  In 2013, the program continued to respond to inquiries regarding EUP requirements but did not issue any permits.  For more information regarding Wisconsin requirements for EUPs, see ch. 29.71, Wis. Adm. Code.   

Direction for the Coming Year

In 2014 the program will improve the instructions for Section 18 and EUP applications.  The program will also continue to respond to incoming requests related to new and expired Section 18 and 24(c) authorizations, and new EUPs.  The program will revise its webpages with information related to special registrations and EUPs.

For more information you may email the department.