April 2020

EPA gives temporary supply chain flexibility for disinfectants, expands list

On April 14, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced it had put into place additional measures to ensure a steady supply of safe and effective disinfectant products to help battle the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2. A second temporary amendment to Pesticide Registration (PR) Notice 98-10 was issued to streamline the “process for adding additional registered sources of active ingredients to a formulation and setting up an approved pesticide manufacturing establishment.” Registrants can now temporarily “notify EPA of certain formulation and manufacturing facility changes and immediately release the product for sale without waiting for EPA approval.”

This action responds to industry concerns that the EPA approval process was creating bottlenecks and preventing the expansion of the country’s disinfectant supply. These temporary measures will continue to ensure effectiveness of registered antimicrobial products only.

The agency maintains and regularly updates its List N: Disinfectants for use against SARS-CoV-2, which now contains over 360 products registered with EPA that meet emerging viral pathogen claims or have demonstrated efficacy against previous strains of coronavirus (i.e., SARS, MERS). It was recently expanded to include other known products that meet EPA’s criteria for efficacy.

EPA announced the first temporary amendment to PRN 98-10 on March 31 to allow use of any “similar source” of eight specific active ingredients “without having to first apply for and receive EPA approval of an amendment to their pesticide registration identifying the new source of ingredient.”

The April 14 amendment to PRN 98-10 supersedes the previous one from March 2020 and is time-limited. EPA will post an online notification at least seven days before terminating the temporary amendment. Any permanent modifications to PRN 98-10 will only be made following a public comment period, according to industry sources.