Pesticide Products (FIFRA)

Statement on Approved Sale and Use of U.S. Borax Pesticide Products in USA - FIFRA

Pesticides are stringently regulated in the USA under the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Federal Insecticide Fungicide and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) to ensure they “will not generally cause unreasonable adverse effects on the environment.” FIFRA provides for the federal regulation of pesticide distribution, sale, and use. All pesticides distributed or sold in the United States must be registered (licensed) by EPA.

A pesticide is defined by EPA FIFRA as any substance or mixture of substances intended for preventing, destroying, repelling, or mitigating any pest as well as prevention of decay fungi.

U.S. Borax’s registered products

All U.S. Borax products registered under FIFRA must be sold only into approved uses listed on the label. Formulators are responsible for obtaining and maintaining their own product registrations. U.S. Borax products shall not be used or sold for any pesticidal formulation or application except for those products which have been officially registered for such use in the country and jurisdiction of use/sale, where such registrations are required.

U.S. Borax offers manufacturing use products (MG grade) as well as end-use formulated products. A manufacturing use product is a product intended and labeled for formulation and repackaging into other pesticide products and requires additional discussion and coordination between U.S. Borax and our customers depending on the intended end use. A manufacturing use product label does not bear directions for use, whereas an end-use formulation is a product that bears directions for use on the label. It should be noted that our technical grade (TG) products do not have any links to EPA Registrations and should not be used in the formulation and repackaging into other pesticide products.

U.S. Borax EPA FIFRA registered pesticides

Manufacturing use (MG grade)
  • Borax Manufacturing Grade: Registration No. 1624-124
  • Neobor® Manufacturing Grade: Registration No. 1624-1
  • Octabor® Manufacturing Grade: Registration No. 1624-125
  • Optibor® MG: Registration No. 1624-117
End use formulation
  • Borogard® ZB and Composibor®: Registration No. 1624-120
  • Tim-bor® Industrial: Registration No. 1624-39

Approved uses

U.S. Borax pest control products are to be used only in accordance with the directions on the label. It is an offense under FIFRA to use these products in a way that is inconsistent with the specific use and method of application on the label. U.S. Borax will not advocate or support the use of borates in conflict with US EPA regulations nor do we support use of a non-EPA registered product as a pesticide. The EPA strictly regulates the use of substances to control pests as a pesticide.

Borates for flea control or carpet applications

U.S. Borax does not sell any product into the borate/borax flea control or carpet application businesses. In keeping with our product stewardship commitment to our customers, we recommend against the use of borate products for carpet applications. These applications include boric acid, borax or other borate-containing products intended for use on carpets as deodorizers or flea control agents.

These carpet-use patterns are different from all other borate product uses in that they present the opportunity for small children or pets to ingest borates directly from the carpets. It is not feasible to assess the extent of exposure to children and pets under all possible scenarios, due to the variety of parameters that determine exposure from carpets (eg variation in carpet type, borate product type, application method and rate, vacuum efficiency and frequency, and individual behavioral patterns of children or pets). Without adequate exposure information, U.S. Borax cannot determine the level of risk that may result from carpet-use patterns; therefore, we do not support the use of borate products for carpet flea control applications by anyone, especially consumers.

The user assumes the risk to persons or property that arises from any such use of these products. U.S. Borax will not be responsible or liable for any non-compliant use of our products.

Borate Testing Task Force

U.S. Borax is a member of the Borate Testing Task Force (BTTF) that was formed in response to the Data Call- In (DCI) Notice that EPA issued pursuant to the Registration Review for Boric Acid and the Sodium Borate Salts. The task force was assembled to sponsor the DCI toxicity studies. All of the DCI required toxicity studies have been conducted and submitted to EPA.

Key Points

  • If a customer would like to purchase an a EPA registered pesticide from U.S. Borax or another BTTF member, the customer is not required to provide compensation for the toxicity studies and the customer can cite the Formulator’s Exemption in their product registration submission to the EPA. The EPA will link the studies to the customer’s product registration.
  • If a customer chooses to purchase an EPA registered pesticide product from a non-borate task force member, the customer must compensate the BTTF for the toxicity studies. Therefore, it is to a customer’s advantage to purchase a U.S. Borax registered pesticide to avoid compensation fees.


May 2020

U.S. Borax, part of Rio Tinto, is a global leader in the supply and science of borates—naturally-occurring minerals containing boron and other elements. We are 1,000 people serving 650 customers with more than 1,800 delivery locations globally. We supply around 30% of the world’s need for refined borates from our world-class mine in Boron, California, about 100 miles northeast of Los Angeles.  Learn more about Rio Tinto.

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