The EPA and Arysta LifeScience North America, LLC have entered into a Memorandum of Agreement to formally terminate all agricultural use of iodomethane in the United States by the end of 2012 and ultimately remove all iodomethane products from the U.S. market. The EPA is requesting comment on Arysta’s request for voluntary cancellation of all of the company’s iodomethane product registrations, as stipulated in the agreement.

Iodomethane, or methyl iodide, has been registered since 2007 for use as a pre-plant soil fumigant to control pests in soil where fruits, vegetables, ornamental plants, and turf are to be grown. In March 2012, Arysta, the sole registrant, announced its plans to immediately suspend all sales of its iodomethane MIDAS products in the United States.

Under the recently signed agreement and the voluntary cancellation request, all of Arysta’s existing iodomethane end-use product registrations will be cancelled and use of existing stocks in the United States will be prohibited effective December 31, 2012. Further distribution and sale of iodomethane end-use products will be prohibited except to return the products to Arysta (the company will take back existing stocks) or for proper disposal or export.

As of January 1, 2013, Arysta’s technical/manufacturing use iodomethane product may no longer be used in the US except to formulate products for export. The technical product registration will be cancelled effective December 1, 2015. After that date, all sale and distribution of the technical product will also be prohibited except for proper disposal or export. Arysta will send iodomethane product purchasers and retailers a letter describing these provisions.

The EPA’s November 21, 2012, Federal Register notice announces the agency’s receipt of Arysta’s request for voluntary cancellation of all of its iodomethane registrations and opens a 30-day comment period. The EPA anticipates finalizing the cancellation order by the end of 2012, after which the EPA plans to respond to a March 2010 petition from Earthjustice and other organizations requesting that the agency suspend and cancel all iodomethane registrations.

The iodomethane Memorandum of Agreement and the EPA’s Federal Register notice announcing the voluntary cancellation request are available in docket EPA-HQ-OPP-2005-0252 at http://www.regulations.gov/ and on the iodomethane page at www.epa.gov/pesticides/chemicalsearch/