Amazon to pay a $1.2 million administrative penalty for selling unauthorized pesticides in the United States

  February 16, 2018

According to an EPA press release from 02.15.2018, Amazon has agreed to pay a more than $1.2 million administrative penalty in an agreement with the EPA that should protect consumers from the dangers of illegal and misbranded pesticides sold by the online retail giant.
The agreement resolves allegations that Amazon has committed nearly 4,000 violations of the Federal Insecticides, Fungicides and Rodenticides Act (FIFRA) over the past five years by authorizing third parties to sell and distribute imported pesticides from Amazon warehouses, even though these pesticides were not authorized for sale in the United States.
The EPA believes that this agreement will significantly reduce the online sale of illegal pesticides, which pose a serious threat to public health in communities across America. This is one of the highest penalties ever imposed by the agency. While Amazon accepted the sanction, it did not acknowledge or deny the facts alleged against it by the EPA. However, it is committed to closely monitor and remove illegal pesticides from its website.
The products of greatest concern were chalk products, used by customers to draw a pesticide-laden barrier on a surface the user does not want an insect to cross and survive.
Under the terms of the agreement, Amazon will develop an online training course on pesticide regulation and policies to reduce the number of illegal pesticides available on the online marketplace. The training – which will be mandatory for all entities considering selling pesticides on Amazon – will be available to the public and online marketers in English, Spanish and Chinese.
EPA reports that many illegal pesticides are still likely to be sold online and that customers of these products should check the EPA’s registration label on any pesticide product they purchase. Any product that does not have this number cannot be sold legally in the United States.