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Ventura County

Use of Fumigants

November 04, 2001

While we are obviously pleased with the latest statistics that show an overall decline in pesticide use ('County moves up to 8th in use of pesticides,' Oct. 28), I must take exception to environmental advocates who criticized Ventura County growers for replacing methyl bromide with other fumigants.

The California Department of Pesticide Regulation recognizes that fumigants play a critical role in pest management for some crops, because no practical alternatives now exist. At the same time, DPR has balanced the needs of agriculture with reasonable controls on fumigants that protect workers and others who live or work near farms.

DPR strongly supports the development of reduced-risk pest management strategies. We also believe it is important to acknowledge continued progress, and we commend growers in Ventura County for the good work they have done.

Paul E. Helliker

Director, California Department

of Pesticide Regulation

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