Despite concerns raised by more than 50 scientists, the Environmental Protection Agency has granted a one-year registration for Midas fumigant from Arysta LifeScience of Cary, N.C. The product, which contains the active ingredient methyl iodide, is billed as a methyl bromide replacement.



The one-year registration will allow the EPA to complete its reregistration review of fumigant products that were already on the market before Midas was registered.



The agency can then renew the Midas registration, complete registration for the other fumigants and require all fumigant manufacturers to put common mitigation measures in place at the same time.



The EPA registered Midas for use on strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, ornamentals, stone fruits, nut crops, vine crops (including table and winegrapes), turf and nursery crops. It will be marketed as Midas EC Gold, a combination of 33 percent methyl iodide and 62 percent chloropicrin.



As part of the registration, Arysta agreed to a certified applicator training program, which will ensure proper handling and application. EPA also has implemented buffers zones that are scalable based upon fumigant rate and number of acres applied.



To view all of EPA's provisions for using methyl iodide, click here.



The California Department of Pesticide Regulation was one of the entities raising concerns about the product's safety. It currently is reviewing the fumigant and won't have results for at least a year.



On Sept. 24, more than 50 scientists sent a letter to EPA raising several concerns, including Midas as a potential carcinogen and worker exposure. The EPA replied Oct. 5 in a letter outlining how it had addressed those concerns.



"We are confident that by conducting such a rigorous analysis and developing highly restrictive provisions governing its use, there will be no risk of concerns," the agency wrote.