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For more information, contact
James W. Gray
Executive Director
Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data
800-345-5109 or


Kansas City, November 11, 2008 – The Natural Resources Defense Council filed a petition Thursday with the US EPA seeking to cancel the registration of 2,4-D and to revoke all tolerances.

Jim Gray, Executive Director for the Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data said, “After reviewing an unprecedented depth of research data, epidemiological studies, expert panel reviews, literature surveys and after considering all public comment, US EPA concluded in 2005 that 2,4-D use according to label directions does not pose an unacceptable risk to human health or the environment”. The US Environmental Protection Agency concluded its Re-registration Eligibility Decision (RED) of the popular herbicide in 2005, following a 17-year review process.

In 2007, following more than 21 years of research and agency review, the Agency was able to determine that no correlation exists between 2,4-D and human cancer. The second review of available epidemiological studies occurred in response to comments received during the Public Comment Period for the 2,4-D RED. EPA’s report dated December 8, 2004, authored by EPA Scientist Jerry Blondell, PhD., found that none of the more recent epidemiological studies definitively linked human cancer cases to 2,4-D (EPA 2004).

In April 2008, Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) thoroughly reviewed available scientific data and expert regulatory findings regarding 2,4-D and the potential impact its use may have on children, adults, animals and the environment. PMRA found the herbicide to meet all of Canada’s strict pesticide safety regulations.

“These recent findings by the US EPA and Health Canada’s PRMA bolster previous decisions made by authorities including the World Health Organization, European Commission and recent studies by the U.S. National Cancer Institute that deem 2,4-D to be a valuable and useful herbicide that does not pose additional human health or environmental risks when used according to label instructions,” Gray added.

2,4-D, one of the most widely used herbicides in North America and worldwide, is applied to crops such as wheat, corn, rice, soybeans, potatoes, sugar cane, pome fruits, stone fruits and nuts. It controls invasive species in aquatic areas and federally protected areas and broadleaf weeds in turf grass. Loss of effective weed control for home and professional turf goes beyond simply affecting the value of property resale; but more importantly reduces the effectiveness of turf to filter pollutants, prevent soil erosion, improve water infiltration, moderate temperatures, and reduce noise.

An economic evaluation by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (NAPIAP Report 1-PA-96) concluded that the loss of 2,4-D would cost the U.S. economy $1.7 billion annually in higher food production and weed control expenses. A similar study prepared for Canada found the loss of 2,4-D in the agricultural sector would cost the Canadian economy $321 million and the industrial infrastructure segment an additional $17.5 million annually.

For more information about 2,4-D visit or call 1-800-345-5109.


Highlights of 2,4-D Herbicide’s 63-year History

1945  U.S. Patent No 2,390,941 is issued for 2,4-D to plant physiologist Dr. Franklin D. Jones of the American Chemical Paint Company.
1946 2,4-D is registered for use in Canada on crops and turf grass.
1964 54 million pounds of 2,4-D produced as farmers and homeowners alike discover the benefits of effective weed control. Studies at the time found that weeds typically destroyed 30 – 35 percent of crop yields.
1970 Plant scientists continue to find new uses for 2,4-D in protecting crops, such as plant growth regulator on potatoes and weed control for blueberries, cranberries, raspberries and strawberries.
1980 Re-evaluation by the Canadian government of 2,4-D announced in October.
1986 EPA issues preliminary notification of Special Review.
1988 Beginning of reregistration data development by the 2,4-D Task Force and review by EPA.
1996 World Health Organization completes its toxicological review of 2,4-D and determines the compound does not present a risk to human health. 2001 – European Commission completes its toxicological and environmental assessment of 2,4-D and states “…that the plant protection products containing 2,4-D will fulfill the safety requirements laid down in the Directive 91/414/EEC.”
2004 The Henry Ford organization in Dearborn, Michigan declares 2,4-D one of the 75 most important innovations in the previous 75 years.
2005 Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) issues “Proposed Acceptability for Continued Registration” and determines 2,4-D can be used safely on lawn and turf when label directions are followed. Release of proposed decision provides for public comment and input.
2005 EPA releases 2,4-D Reregistration Eligibility Decision (RED). EPA’s review of human health and environmental data concludes there is no additional evidence that would implicate 2,4-D as a cause of cancer and it does not pose an unacceptable risk to human health when product instructions are followed.
2007 - PMRA issues the “Proposed Acceptability for Continued Registration” of 2,4-D in the agriculture, forestry, industrial and aquatic sites, and determines that use in the above-mentioned terrestrial sites is acceptable for continued registration. 2007 – EPA determines the existing data do not support a conclusion that links human cancer to 2,4-D exposure and issues “Decision Not to Initiate a Special Review” after more than 21 years of research and agency review. 2008 – PMRA issues final decision on 2,4-D and determines it is safe to use according to label directions.

About the Task Force

The Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data was formed, as allowed under U.S. pesticide laws, to fund the new research required by both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Canadian Pest Management Regulatory Agency under their current pesticide re-registration/re-evaluation programs. The Task Force does not conduct any research, it simply must fund it. The actual research, under both U.S. and Canadian law, must be done by GLP qualified laboratories. The current companies making up the Task Force are Dow AgroSciences (U.S.), Nufarm Ltd. (Australia) and Agro-Gor Corp., a U.S. corporation jointly owned by Atanor, S.A. (Argentina) and PBI-Gordon Corp. (U.S.).