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EPA fines Kapolei company over pesticide labeling

A Kapolei wood treatment company has been fined $33,750 for producing and selling a mislabeled pesticide on five occasions in 2013 and 2014, according to the Environmental Protection Agency.

The EPA, which announced the settlement with Honolulu Wood Treating of Kapolei, said the state agriculture department conducted inspections for EPA at the company’s facility in 2014 and 2015 and referred this case to EPA for follow-up enforcement.

During the inspections, the department found that Clear-Bor F.T., a product used to protect wood from termites and wood decay fungus, did not meet federal label requirements. Specifically, the first aid information and EPA Establishment number were incorrect. The company has since fully corrected the product label.

EPA requires companies to revise the first aid statements on their pesticide product labels to include medically up-to-date language. The instructions on the non-compliant containers of Clear-Bor F.T. would have likely interfered with proper medical treatment, as the label instructed the user to “induce vomiting by touching back of throat with finger” in case of ingestion. Current medical first aid instructions no longer recommend inducing vomiting.

The required EPA Establishment number was also found to be incorrect for the product. This number is used to identify where the product was last produced. It is crucial to maintaining product integrity, as production includes formulating, packaging, labeling and any alteration of the product prior to sale.

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