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New England Vegetable and Berry Growers Win Award for Pesticide Stewardship

Release Date: 08/03/2005
Contact Information:

Contact: David Deegan (, EPA Office of Public Affairs, (617) 918-1017

For Immediate Release: August 3, 2005; Release # dd050802

(Boston) - The New England Vegetable & Berry Growers Association is one of 16 groups nationwide recently recognized by EPA for efforts to reduce risks associated with use of traditional chemical pesticides.

The association was selected for their long term commitment to sensible pest control approaches, including use of Integrated Pest Management (IPM), and for its innovative approach to helping farmers use biological pesticides in New England agricultural production.

“The New England Vegetable & Berry Growers Association is doing its part to ensure that agricultural and environmental concerns work hand-in-hand,” said Robert W. Varney, regional administrator of EPA’s New England office. “They have led the way in showing that local farmers can work to preserve a healthy environment, while simultaneously protecting and promoting New England’s agricultural economy.”

The award was granted by EPA’s Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (PESP), a voluntary public-private partnership created in 1994 to assist agricultural producers across the country reduce pesticide risks for workers and the environment. Since 1996, more than $450,000 has been awarded to New England states under the program. The New England Vegetable & Berry Growers Association has been a program member since 1995. At a ceremony last month in Arlington, Va., the past president of the association, A. Richard Bonanno, was presented with the award.

The oldest vegetable growers association in America, the New England Vegetable and Berry Growers Association has more than 500 members who farm in New England’s six states, growing crops mainly for “fresh markets,” such as roadside stands, “pick your own” operations, supermarkets, and restaurants. The Association is being recognized for its commitment to IPM and biopesticide adoption.

The association employed some or all of the following PESP strategies:

    • sampling to accurately determine pest population levels;
    • training and demonstrating IPM practices;
    • employing cultural practices such as crop rotation or removing food and habitat for structural pests;
    • controlling or managing pests through biologically based technologies;
    • applying less toxic or reduced-risk pesticides such as insect growth regulators; and
    • using conventional pesticides only when absolutely necessary.
More information on EPA’s Pesticide Environmental Stewardship Program (

More information on EPA New England's work on pesticides (