Chlorpyrifos ban

In the early days of ACP control I was required to use Chlorpyrifos in rotation with other pesticides, for one of 4 applications per year. It’s nasty stuff. My applications on Citrus nursery stock were observed by USDA APHIS. When it came time for the Chlorpyrifos they stayed 100 ft back.


Even though i agree it should be banned, doing it this way is foolish, It cannot stand. The court cannot write laws. They will lose in the Supreme court if Dow or the EPA decides to go there. I never seen a court like the 9th circuit (circus) Just a dog and pony show. Which makes me distrust the side that wants the ban. Environmental policies are decided by the EPA which has the authority granted by Congress. This was not a policy ever introduced, until now. The court has no authority to write policy. What a waste of resources doing it this way. The ban will be lifted no doubt. Again makes me question the motives of doing this in such a half ass way? Is this really about banning Chlorpyrifos? I highly doubt it. This is the long run will hurt the cause, such a shame, as eventually the chemical will continue to be used.


The ban was lifted and has now been turned down. I’d be happy to see it go the U.S. Supreme Court.

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I use Lorsban as a trunk spray for borers on peach trees once a year. In my area its also recommended for apples as a dormant spray mixed with oil. I’m comfortable spraying the peach tree trunks, but I have never used it in the Airblast sprayer to spray the apples. To the best of my knowledge, no good substitute exists for managing the peach tree borers.

Imidan is another chemical on the EPA hit list.

How about pyrethroids?

To me that is good news. Even though I work in the chemical industry, I would not take profit over personal safety of Ag workers and their families or public health. Unfortunately, executives of chemical companies like the ones that market chlorpyrifos are responsible for the bad reputation that the chemical industry has…


No, not strong enough on their own. However there are products that combine them with neonicontinoid and do the job well on these listed pests:

American Plum Borer, Dectes Stem Borer, European Corn Borer, Lesser Peach Tree Borer, Peach Twig Borer, Stem Borer.

Chlorpyrifos is an off-patent chemical originally produced by Dow Chem. but now sold under many brand names. In my opinion its appeal to farmers is the lower cost in comparison to modern alternatives.

Looks like most of the Organophosphate based insecticides are on the way out. Chlopyrifos (Lorsban) is just one of them. Imidan (Phosmet) is another one.

I believe the use of Guthion and Parathion use has already been eliminated on many crops.

The WWII era chemicals are overdue for replacement. Hopefully replaced with something that works as well, is safer and does not cost a lot more money.

Unfortunately, I’m not aware of any modern replacement for Chlopyrifos on peach tree borers in the south east.

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Are they Lesser Peach Tree Borer? They’re listed on my Bayer Leverage 360 label.

Yes, it’s an organochlorophosphate – and with exception of the phosphate molecule not too different from DDT.

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Richard, I imagine you could write the book, but I won’t ask that much of you. I would find it helpful though if you’d expand that statement to help those of us who, like me, don’t know the real-world implications of many of these things! And thank you.

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It seems esfenvalerate is good enough, see link below:


In chemistry, “organo-” refers to a molecular framework built with carbon and often hydrogen.

DDT is a human-designed “organo-chloride” molecule composed soley of Carbon, Hydrogen, and Chlorine. It is a potent insect neurotoxin, and infamously persistent in ecosystems.

Like DDT, Chlorpyrifos also has an “organo-” structure with Chlorine – plus Phosphate (a salt of Phosphorus) and Sulfur. It is also a potent insect neurotoxin with some persistence in the environment.


Thank you. Very clear and to the point.

There’s one aspect to this that I’m most interested in, and that’s that a molecule can be redesigned with additional pieces stuck on, as in the Chlopyrifos example, or perhaps with a particular group replaced with something functionally identical but structurally different (The pharmaceutical industry is well known for this to keep ahead of expiring patents. IIRC correctly Schering-Plough did just that some years ago with Claritin, to give one example.)

An issue I have with insecticides is more with the industry than with the chemicals: I don’t trust profit-driven entities to be straight with regulators and I’m not entirely comfortable with regulators, for that matter. And I personally am not equipped to understand and intelligently weigh the evidence.

That doesn’t mean that I won’t use “synthetic chemicals”; I will and do. It’s just that I do everything within reason to minimize the need, and then use them judiciously. So It’s very useful to me to have your informed discussion of these things and I value it. Thank you.


The bigger issue in my opinion than the possibility of not being straight forward with regulators is when clear scientific data is available about the dangers and high risks of a product, and yet big corporations can lobby elected officials enough so that they choose to favor their campaign financiers over the safety of the public. Chlorpyrifos is a good example of this.


Yes, and in this case I believe it was the corporate farming lobby, not the manufacturers.

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My grandma almost died years ago because of Malithion poisoning. It was state funded and irresponsibly applied by state workers. It made our whole family (including me) seriously sick and taught us first hand about the lies chem companies tell about their products and how willing any lawyer is to bring a suit against the state. Several elderly in the community died. Our beautiful mini mare with a perfect record of healthy foals had one still born. My friends complained for a long time of symptoms consistent with poisoning from exposure…but thought we were just crazy weirdos because they chose to believe it was safe. (Shrugs)

There was more product from drift on my grandparents property then on the place they spayed across the road. My uncles had to fight the doctors too to get them to administer the atropine which is the treatment…which she responded to. It seems to me when liability is there…drs will help cover the rear of the guilty. A judge eventually made some lawyer stay with the case/law suit …but you cannot make them win. All the evidence supported my grandma being poisoned by that exposure…and she was many years recovering. Justice will eventually be had, but not in this life for her.

Here is a fun fact. The term ‘breakdown’ is commonly thought to mean revert to a natural substance and become less toxic. With chemicals it means it loses its molecular form/identity. Malithion “breaks down” into malioxin which is ten to the fourth power more toxic. It happens faster in hot dry conditions. We think the state was trying to dispose of a bunch of old product cheaply, under the guise of helping the local yokals who were complaining about the grasshoppers.
The governor declared a state of emergency…because of the threat to the “agriculture” (a few acres of hay and a few cows)
It was a lesson not quickly forgotten. Nuff said.


Very sorry to hear about your family’s sufferings… Unfortunately this sad story will be repeated over and over in other communities with other products until we are able to elect politicians who are honest enough to serve the public and not the greedy selfish rich…


it’s so difficult who to trust anymore, as the very person granted authority by congress seemingly had his motives as well(among other things which led to his resignation) when he reinstated the pesticide. Hopefully the new guy who replaced him would right the wrong and just ban it altogether. It is clearly the least foolish way, and won’t be a waste of resources.


No, they are different. In my area the normal cover sprays take care of the Lesser Peach Tree Borer. The only chemical listed for control of peach tree borers in my peach production manual is Chlorpyrifos.

From what I understand, the OP category of insecticides have a poor safety record. The fact that this category of chemicals was used to create toxins designed to kill people rather than insects certainly creates concern.


Did you see the link from @Ahmad regarding Esfenvalerate? It is a relatively new isomer of Fenvalerate and has some good reviews: