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U.S. EPA cites Las Vegas store for selling canceled pesticide product

Release Date: 8/17/2004
Contact Information: Laura Gentile, Press Office, 415/947-4227

SAN FRANCISCO - Yesterday the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency fined the owner of a discount store $4,400 for allegedly selling a pesticidal product that was canceled by the EPA more than two years ago, in violation of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide and Rodenticide Act.

The EPA alleged that Greenbacks, Inc. sold "Tiny Tiger" flea and tick cat collars at a Las Vegas store subsequently purchased by Dollar Tree Stores, Inc. The collars contained a pesticide, chlorpyrifos, which was canceled by the EPA for nearly all home uses in 2002 because children might be harmed by exposure to the chemical.

"Retailers need to remove canceled pesticidal products from their shelves," says Enrique Manzanilla, director of EPA's cross media division. "EPA often cancels certain uses of pesticides because of concerns about children's exposure to these chemicals."

In the late 1990s, the EPA began a review of all pesticides to ensure that they were able to meet the tough, new safety standards established in 1996 through the Food Quality Protection Act. Based on this review, the EPA canceled chlorpyrifos for nearly all indoor and outdoor residential uses.

Chlorpyrifos is one of the most widely used insecticides in the country. Its uses include controlling pests on fruits and vegetables, golf courses and utility poles and fenceposts.

The EPA issued the civil complaint against Dollar Tree Stores, Inc. based on an inspection of the store conducted in March 2003 by the Nevada Department of Agriculture. In June 2003 Greenbacks merged into Dollar Tree.