China to Control Harmful Adjuvants in EC Pesticides  

CCPIA CHINADesignated by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology (MIIT) as the drafter of the “Limit Standard of Harmful Solvents for Emulsifiable Concentrates Pesticide Preparations”, China Crop Protection Industry Association (CCPIA) revealed that the standard has been finalized and will be issued in no time. The standard sets the limit level of several harmful solvents which are commonly used in the emulsifiable concentrates (EC) of the pesticide preparations. As these solvents are largely utilized for formulating the insecticides, herbicides and fungicides, China plans to reduce the usage of 5 agrochemical adjuvants by 90% in three years.

Table. Limitation of harmful solvents in EC pesticide products

Solvent

Limit(Mass fraction) ≤

benzene

1%

toluene

1%

dimethylbenzene

10%

ethylbenzene

2%

methanol

5%

dimethylformamide(DMF)

2%

naphthalene

1%

 

Currently, there are over 9,000 EC products registered with the Institute for the Control of Agrochemicals, Ministry of Agriculture (ICAMA), accounted for about half of the preparation products. Most of them are formulated with harmful chemicals such as carcinogens, VOCs, inflammables and explosives, which bring threat during manufacture, storage, transportation and utilization.

As most of the EC formulations fall under the categories of pyrethroids, abamectins, organophosphates, carbamates, amide herbicides and azole fungicides, the CCPIA listed 43 of the active ingredients (ais) as the targets for replacement of the adjuvants, including: chlorpyrifos, imidacloprid, beta-cypermethrin, lambda-cyhalothrin, beta-cyfluthrin, emamectin benzoate, fenoxaprop-P-ethyl, butachlor, prochloraz, acetochlor, acephate, propiconazole, etc. EC manufacturers of the above active ingredients are required to replace the adjuvants with appropriate alternatives. The renewals process of their manufacturing permits will be finalized by 30 Sep 2015. When the EC companies apply to the relevant authorities for manufacturing permits, they will be required to conduct the “all-components analysis” for their products and report the contents of the harmful solvents.  Manufacturers of the agrochemical adjuvants are required to control the level of ethylbenzene and naphthalene in their products. EC products of other ais for replacement will be discussed and the plan will be published by 30 Sep 2014. Later, the control measures on EC products would be expanded to other types of pesticide. Last month, the MIIT has collected  opinions of the “Catalogue of Recomended Substitutes to Toxic and Hazardous Raw Materials (2012 Draft)”, which comprised of the inventory of toxic and hazardous materials and their alternatives. The turpentine-based oil solvent, white mineral oil, C23-29 aliphatic hydrocarbons and aliphatic acid esters are listed as the recommended  alternatives for EC manufacturing.

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