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May 31, 2011


Governments of Canada and Quebec reach NAFTA settlement regarding 2,4-D


Kansas City, MO (May 31, 2011) – Dow AgroSciences LLC, a member company of the Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data, announced last week that it has reached an agreement with regard to its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) challenge against the Government of Canada.

As part of the settlement, the Government of Quebec recognizes that 2,4-D does not pose an unacceptable safety risk to human health and the environment when used according to label instructions.

Section 3 a) of the settlement agreement states:

“... the Government of Quebec agrees that products containing 2,4-D do not pose an unacceptable risk to human health or the environment, provided that the instructions on their label are followed, as concluded by Health Canada’s Pest Management Regulatory Agency (“PMRA”) in its May 16, 2008, decision on the re-evaluation of 2,4-D.”

“It is a positive outcome that the Government of Quebec has acknowledged the science-based health and safety review of 2,4-D conducted by Health Canada,” said Jim Gray, executive director of the Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data. “In doing so, Quebec recognizes that its decision based on an incomplete review of 2,4-D by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) was not valid. We have long advocated that any regulation aimed at the protection of the health and safety of the product users be based on scientifically valid risk assessments which include the most modern scientific evidence available.”

In 2005-06 Health Canada considered the IARC classification in conducting the reevaluation of 2,4-D and concluded:

“... The International Agency for Research on Cancer is the only international regulatory organization that has not revisited the issue of 2,4-D in its entirety. More recent re-evaluations by the European Union, the United States Environmental Protection Agency, New Zealand and the World Health Organization do not classify 2,4-D as human carcinogen.”


In 2002 the Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data began working with the Government of Quebec in an effort to have science-based risk analysis form the foundation for changes to Quebec’s Pesticides Management Code. At the time, the Government of Quebec initially included 2,4-D on the list of prohibited pesticides based on an incorrect interpretation of the carcinogenicity classification of chlorophenoxy herbicides by IARC. During its deliberations on this matter 2002-03, the government concluded it could not scientifically justify the prohibition of 2,4-D based on the incomplete IARC review.

About the Task Force

The Industry Task Force II on 2,4-D Research Data is organized to provide funding for ongoing Good Laboratory Practice (GLP) research studies required to respond to the US EPA reregistration and Health Canada PMRA pesticide re-evaluation programs. The 2,4-D Task Force is comprised of the companies owning the technical registration on the active ingredient in 2,4-D herbicides: Dow AgroSciences (U.S.), Nufarm, Ltd. (Australia) and Agro-Gor Corp., a U.S. corporation jointly owned by Albaugh, Inc. (U.S.) and PBI Gordon Corp. (U.S.).

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For more information relating to the settlement agreement, contact: Brenda Harris of Dow AgroSciences at 403-775-8829

For information relating to the Task Force, contact: Jim Gray at 1-800-345-5109

Reference Information:

Download PDF: Health Canada Pest Management Regulatory Agency; Re-evaluation of the Lawn and Turf Uses of 2,4-D, Proposed Acceptability for Continuing Registration, February 21
Download PDF: Health Canada Pest Management Regulatory Agency; Lawn and Turf Uses of (2,4-Dichlorophenoxy) acetic Acid [2,4-D] Interim Measures, August 16, 2006:
Download PDF: Health Canada Pest Management Regulatory Agency; Re-evaluation Decision (2,4-Dichlorophenoxy) acetic Acid [2,4-D], May 16, 2008
Download PDF: News Release Quebec NAFTA 31 May 2011