About two months after the state’s environmental agency ordered a major pet products retailer to immediately cease selling unregistered pesticide products, many of those products remain on the retailer’s shelves and website.
“It’s illegal to sell a product that makes pesticidal claims in California unless it has been registered by both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Pesticide Regulation,” said Lea Brooks, a spokeswoman for California’s Environmental Protection Agency and its Department of Pesticide Regulation.
In September, the pesticide department fined Phoenix-based PetSmart nearly $400,000 for selling 33 unregistered pesticide products [PDF] to California consumers. The products ranged from dog and cat shampoos to reptile cage liners. Once a product is registered, the state can evaluate it for toxins, which could be transferred from animals to humans.
The state's requirement applies to retailers, not product manufacturers. According to Brooks, the retailer is responsible for the products it sells on its shelves.
If a manufacturer is making pesticidal clams, the product must be registered with the state and federal government, or the pesticidal claim must be removed from the labeling, which includes marketing material, Brooks said.