US EPA to OK oxalic acid for varroa mite control
The US EPA has proposed the approval of oxalic acid dihydrate under an expedited review process for the control of varroa mites in beehives. The application was submitted by the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service's Bee Research Lab at the request of the EPA's Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP). Oxalic acid was previously registered as an antimicrobial pesticide and the OPP has in-house data on human health, environmental fate and ecotoxicology, the Agency points out. It cites President Barack Obama's June 2014 memorandum to create a federal strategy to promote the health of bees and to expedite the review of products targeting pests harmful to pollinators. The EPA also notes that the application could be expedited through its work sharing agreement with the Canadian authorities as oxalic acid was approved for varroa mite control in Canada in 2010. The normal 24-month schedule for a registration decision would make the due date in December 2016. But the EPA is seeking public comment on its proposed approval by March 6th 2015.