BRANDON, FLORIDA - The nation's first full-spectrum 100% neem oil approved by the US Environmental Protection Agency and available on retail shelves will be distributed in Florida by Brandon-based Neem Tree Farms.

"This is a major step forward for organic growers as well as people who are concerned about minimizing their impact on the environment," said Vicki Parsons, CEO of Neem Tree Farms. "Before NimBioSys(TM) Neem Oil Biological Insecticide, you could buy EPA-approved neem oil formulations labeled to treat insect pests on crops, but the azadirachtin -- generally considered to be the most important insect-controlling compound -- had been removed and sold as a separate product."

And while full-spectrum neem oil has been available, it had not been reviewed for safety and efficacy by the US Environmental Protection Agency.

Neem oil has been used in tropical countries for thousands of years and multiple international studies have documented its efficacy at controlling up to 200 insect pests. Unlike toxic pesticides -- including botanically based products like permethrin that also kill beneficial insects -- neem oil contains nearly 100 different compounds that repel some pests, disrupt growth hormones in others and affect fecundity in insects like house flies.

The EPA approval comes after two years of extensive testing and review of data from dozens of international studies with the final report noting that 100% cold-pressed neem oil is "practically non-toxic."

NimBioSys(TM) Neem Oil Biological Insecticide is labeled to treat a wide variety of pests including aphids, beetles, stink bugs, leafhoppers, whiteflies, mealy bugs, mites, weevils, scale and thrips. According to the EPA, the cold-pressed neem oil "will not cause adverse effects to humans and other nontarget organisms when used according to label directions."

It is currently registered in Florida, Minnesota, California, Pennsylvania, Illinois and Texas.

Neem Tree Farms is currently working with a number of retailers to get NimBioSys(TM) Neem Oil Biological Insecticide on the shelves of local garden shops as well as health food stores. "Florida gardeners probably deal with more insect pests than people in any other state -- but they're also very aware of the impact that toxic pesticides have on our fragile ecosystems," adds Casey Fisher, retail sales manager.

SOURCE: Neem Tree Farms, Inc.