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Pesticide News Story: Easing Regulatory Burdens and Expanding Opportunities for Minor Crop Producers: Crop Grouping Final Rule

For Release: December 7, 2007

Minor crop producers and consumers will be the primary beneficiaries of EPA finalizing the revision to its pesticide tolerance crop grouping regulations, which allow the establishment of tolerances (maximum residue levels) for multiple, related crops based upon data from a representative set of crops. The revision, published in a December 7, 2007, Federal Register notice, creates a new crop group for edible fungi (mushrooms), expands existing crop groups by adding new commodities, establishes new crop subgroups, and revises the representative crops in some groups. These changes reflect the global competition for new or ethnic commodities. EPA expects these revisions to promote greater use of crop groupings for tolerance-setting purposes and, in particular, to assist in retaining or making available pesticides for minor crop uses. This is the first in a series of regulatory crop group updates.

The revised crop group rule is based upon petitions submitted to EPA by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Inter-regional Research Project No. 4 (IR-4). The petitions were developed by the International Crop Groupings Consulting Committee (ICGCC), which is currently composed of over 180 crop, agrichemical and regulatory experts representing more that 40 countries and organizations, including U.S., Canada and European Union (EU) members. These petitions and the monographs supporting them are included in the docket for the rule, which can be found under docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2006-0766 at www.regulations.gov. This final rule is a burden-reducing regulation. The Federal Register notice announcing the final rule is available on EPA's Web site.

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