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Notice

Notice of Filing a Pesticide Petition to Establish a Tolerance for a Certain Pesticide Chemical in or on Food

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Information about this document as published in the Federal Register.

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AGENCY:

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

This notice announces the initial filing of a pesticide petition proposing the establishment of regulations for residues of a certain pesticide chemical in or on various food commodities.

DATES:

Comments, identified by docket control number PF-1061, must be received on or before January 14, 2002.

ADDRESSES:

Comments may be submitted by mail, electronically, or in person. Please follow the detailed instructions for each method as provided in Unit I.C. of the SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, it is imperative that you identify docket control number PF-1061 in the subject line on the first page of your response.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

By mail: William G. Sproat, Registration Division (7505C), Office of Pesticide Programs, Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460; telephone number: (703) 308-8587; e-mail address: sproat.william@epa.gov.

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SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

I. General Information

A. Does this Action Apply to Me?

You may be affected by this action if you are an agricultural producer, food manufacturer or pesticide manufacturer. Potentially affected categories and entities may include, but are not limited to: Start Printed Page 64820

CategoriesNAICS codesExamples of potentially affected entities
Industry111Crop production
112Animal production
311Food manufacturing
32532Pesticide manufacturing

This listing is not intended to be exhaustive, but rather provides a guide for readers regarding entities likely to be affected by this action. Other types of entities not listed in the table could also be affected. The North American Industrial Classification System (NAICS) codes have been provided to assist you and others in determining whether or not this action might apply to certain entities. If you have questions regarding the applicability of this action to a particular entity, consult the person listed under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

B. How Can I Get Additional Information, Including Copies of this Document and Other Related Documents?

1. Electronically. You may obtain electronic copies of this document, and certain other related documents that might be available electronically, from the EPA Internet Home Page at http://www.epa.gov/​. To access this document, on the Home Page select “Laws and Regulations,” “Regulations and Proposed Rules,” and then look up the entry for this document under the “Federal Register—Environmental Documents.” You can also go directly to the Federal Register listings at http://www.epa.gov/​fedrgstr/​.

2. In person. The Agency has established an official record for this action under docket control number PF-1061. The official record consists of the documents specifically referenced in this action, any public comments received during an applicable comment period, and other information related to this action, including any information claimed as confidential business information (CBI). This official record includes the documents that are physically located in the docket, as well as the documents that are referenced in those documents. The public version of the official record does not include any information claimed as CBI. The public version of the official record, which includes printed, paper versions of any electronic comments submitted during an applicable comment period, is available for inspection in the Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Rm. 119, Crystal Mall #2, 1921 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, VA, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The PIRIB telephone number is (703) 305-5805.

C. How and to Whom Do I Submit Comments?

You may submit comments through the mail, in person, or electronically. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, it is imperative that you identify docket control number PF-1061 in the subject line on the first page of your response.

1. By mail. Submit your comments to: Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Information Resources and Services Division (7502C), Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460.

2. In person or by courier. Deliver your comments to: Public Information and Records Integrity Branch (PIRIB), Information Resources and Services Division (7502C), Office of Pesticide Programs (OPP), Environmental Protection Agency, Rm. 119, Crystal Mall #2, 1921 Jefferson Davis Highway, Arlington, VA. The PIRIB is open from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday, excluding legal holidays. The PIRIB telephone number is (703) 305-5805.

3. Electronically. You may submit your comments electronically by e-mail to: opp-docket@epa.gov, or you can submit a computer disk as described above. Do not submit any information electronically that you consider to be CBI. Avoid the use of special characters and any form of encryption. Electronic submissions will be accepted in Wordperfect 6.1/8.0 or ASCII file format. All comments in electronic form must be identified by docket control number PF-1061. Electronic comments may also be filed online at many Federal Depository Libraries.

D. How Should I Handle CBI That I Want to Submit to the Agency?

Do not submit any information electronically that you consider to be CBI. You may claim information that you submit to EPA in response to this document as CBI by marking any part or all of that information as CBI. Information so marked will not be disclosed except in accordance with procedures set forth in 40 CFR part 2. In addition to one complete version of the comment that includes any information claimed as CBI, a copy of the comment that does not contain the information claimed as CBI must be submitted for inclusion in the public version of the official record. Information not marked confidential will be included in the public version of the official record without prior notice. If you have any questions about CBI or the procedures for claiming CBI, please consult the person identified under FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT.

E. What Should I Consider as I Prepare My Comments for EPA?

You may find the following suggestions helpful for preparing your comments:

1. Explain your views as clearly as possible.

2. Describe any assumptions that you used.

3. Provide copies of any technical information and/or data you used that support your views.

4. If you estimate potential burden or costs, explain how you arrived at the estimate that you provide.

5. Provide specific examples to illustrate your concerns.

6. Make sure to submit your comments by the deadline in this notice.

7. To ensure proper receipt by EPA, be sure to identify the docket control number assigned to this action in the subject line on the first page of your response. You may also provide the name, date, and Federal Register citation.

II. What Action is the Agency Taking?

EPA has received a pesticide petition as follows proposing the establishment and/or amendment of regulations for residues of a certain pesticide chemical in or on various food commodities under section 408 of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FFDCA), 21 U.S.C. 346a. EPA has determined that this petition contains data or information regarding the elements set forth in section 408(d)(2); however, EPA has not fully evaluated the sufficiency of the submitted data at this time or whether the data support granting of the petition. Additional data may be needed before EPA rules on the petition.

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List of Subjects

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Dated: November 29, 2001.

Peter Caulkins,

Acting Director, Registration Division, Office of Pesticide Programs.

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Summary of Petition

The petitioner summary of the pesticide petition is printed below as required by section 408(d)(3) of the Start Printed Page 64821FFDCA. The summary of the petition was prepared by the petitioner and represents the view of the petitioner. EPA is publishing the petition summary verbatim without editing it in any way. The petition summary announces the availability of a description of the analytical methods available to EPA for the detection and measurement of the pesticide chemical residues or an explanation of why no such method is needed.

Dow AgroSciences LLC

PP EUP-LN

EPA has received a pesticide petition (PP EUP-LN) from Dow AgroSciences LLC, 9330 Zionsville Road, Indianapolis, IN 46268 proposing, pursuant to section 408(d) of the FFDCA, 21 U.S.C. 346a(d), to amend 40 CFR part 180 by establishing a tolerance for residues of spinosad in or on the raw agricultural commodity stored grain (wheat, barley, corn, oats, rice, and sorghum/milo) at 3 parts per million (ppm). EPA has determined that the petition contains data or information regarding the elements set forth in section 408(d)(2) of the FFDCA; however, EPA has not fully evaluated the sufficiency of the submitted data at this time or whether the data support granting of the petition. Additional data may be needed before EPA rules on the petition.

A. Residue Chemistry

1. Plant metabolism. The metabolism of spinosad in plants (apples, cabbage, cotton, tomato, and turnip) and animals (goats and poultry), are adequately understood for the purposes of these tolerances. A rotational crop study showed no carryover of measurable spinosad-related residues in representative test crops.

2. Analytical method. There is a practical method (immunoassay) for detecting (0.005 ppm) and measuring (0.01 ppm) levels of spinosad in or on food with a limit of detection that allows monitoring of food with residues at or above the level set for these tolerances. The method has had a successful method tryout in EPA's laboratories.

3. Magnitude of residues. Tolerances as high as 10 ppm (Brassica) and 8 ppm (leafy vegetables) have been previously established for crop commodities treated with spinosad. Magnitude of residue studies were conducted at three sites for artichokes. Residues found in these studies ranged from 0.062 ppm to 0.156 ppm. Magnitude of residue studies were conducted at three sites for asparagus. Residues found in these studies were all less than 0.009 ppm. Magnitude of residues studies were conducted at five sites for garden beet tops (one of the representative crops for the leaves of root and tuber vegetable crop group). Residues found in these studies ranged from 0.03 ppm to 4.0 ppm. Previously submitted data used in support of the established residue tolerance on Brassica (cole) leafy vegetables are also to be used in support of the proposed residue tolerance for leaves of root and tuber vegetables. Magnitude of residue studies were conducted at six sites for pears (one of the representative crops for the pome fruit crop group). Residues found in these studies ranged from non-detectable to 0.08 ppm. Previously submitted data used in support of the established residue tolerance on apples are to be used in support of the proposed residue tolerance for pome fruit. Magnitude of residue studies were conducted at four sites on pecans (one of the representative crops for the tree nut crop group). Residues found in these studies ranged from less than 0.0010 ppm to 0.0076 ppm. Previously submitted data used in support of the established residue tolerance on almonds are also to be used in support of the proposed residue tolerance for tree nuts and pistachio. A magnitude of residue study was conducted at 20 sites on tomatoes and peppers (two of the representative crops for the fruiting vegetables crop group). Residues found in this study ranged from less than 0.01 ppm to 0.13 ppm in tomatoes, and 0.01 ppm to 0.18 ppm in peppers. Previously submitted data used in support of the established residue tolerance on fruiting vegetables (except cucurbits) are to be used in support of the proposed residue tolerance for okra. Magnitude of residue studies were conducted at six sites for cranberry. No quantifiable residues (>0.01 ppm) were observed in any test sample. Magnitude of residue studies were conducted at five sites for garden beet roots (one of the representative crops for the root and tuber vegetable crop group) and tops (one of the representative crops for the leaves of root and tuber vegetable crop group). Residues found in beet tops ranged from 0.03 ppm to 4.0 ppm. Previously submitted data used in support of the established residue tolerance on Brassica (cole) leafy vegetables are also to be used in support of the proposed residue tolerance for leaves of root and tuber vegetables. This data support tolerances of 0.1 ppm in garden and sugar beet roots and a 10.0 ppm tolerance for Crop Group 2.

B. Toxicological Profile

1. Acute toxicity. Spinosad has low acute toxicity. The rat oral LD50 is 3,738 milligrams/kilograms (mg/kg) for males and >5,000 mg/kg for females, whereas the mouse oral LD50 is >5,000 mg/kg. The rabbit dermal LD50 is >5,000 mg/kg and the rat inhalation LC50 is >5.18 miligram/liter (mg/L) air. In addition, spinosad is not a skin sensitizer in guinea pigs and does not produce significant dermal or ocular irritation in rabbits. End use formulations of spinosad that are water based suspension concentrates have similar low acute toxicity profiles.

2. Genotoxicity. Short-term assays for genotoxicity consisting of a bacterial reverse mutation assay (Ames test), an in vitro assay for cytogenetic damage using the chinese hamster ovary (CHO) cells, an in vitro mammalian gene mutation assay using mouse lymphoma cells, an in vitro assay for DNA damage and repair in rat hepatocytes, and an in vivo cytogenetic assay in the mouse bone marrow (micronucleus test) have been conducted with spinosad. These studies show a lack of genotoxicity.

3. Reproductive and developmental toxicity. Spinosad caused decreased body weights in maternal rats given 200 mg/kg/day by gavage (highest dose tested (HDT)). This was not accompanied by either embryo toxicity, fetal toxicity, or teratogenicity. The no observed adverse effect levels (NOAELs) for maternal and fetal toxicity in rats were 50 and 200 mg/kg/day, respectively. A teratology study in rabbits showed that spinosad caused decreased body weight gain and a few abortions in maternal rabbits given 50 mg/kg/day highest dose tested (HDT). Maternal toxicity was not accompanied by either embryo toxicity, fetal toxicity, or teratogenicity. The NOAELs for maternal and fetal toxicity in rabbits were 10 and 50 mg/kg/day, respectively. In a 2-generation reproduction study in rats, parental toxicity was observed in both males and females given 100 mg/kg/day highest dose tested (HDT). Perinatal effects (decreased litter size and pup weight) at 100 mg/kg/day were attributed to maternal toxicity. The NOAEL for maternal and pup effects was 10 mg/kg/day.

4. Subchronic toxicity. Spinosad was evaluated in 13-week dietary studies and showed NOAELs of 4.89 and 5.38 mg/kg/day, respectively in male and female dogs; 6 and 8 mg/kg/day, respectively in male and female mice; and 33.9 and 38.8 mg/kg/day, respectively, in male and female rats. No dermal irritation or systemic toxicity occurred in a 21-day repeated dose Start Printed Page 64822dermal toxicity study in rabbits given 1,000 mg/kg/day.

5. Chronic toxicity. Based on chronic testing with spinosad in the dog and the rat, EPA has set a reference dose (RfD) of 0.027 mg/kg/day for spinosad. The RfD has incorporated a 100-fold safety factor to the NOAELs found in the chronic dog study to account for interspecies and intraspecies variation. The NOAELs shown in the dog chronic study were 2.68 and 2.72 mg/kg/day, respectively for male and female dogs. The NOAELs (systemic) shown in the rat chronic/carcinogenicity/neurotoxicity study were 9.5 and 12.0 mg/kg/day, respectively for male and female rats. Using the Guidelines for Carcinogen Risk Assessment published in the Federal Register September 24, 1986 (51 FR 33992), it is proposed that spinosad be classified as Group E for carcinogenicity (no evidence of carcinogenicity) based on the results of carcinogenicity studies in two species. There was no evidence of carcinogenicity in an 18-month mouse feeding study and a 24-month rat feeding study at all dosages tested. The NOAELs shown in the mouse oncogenicity study were 11.4 and 13.8 mg/kg/day, respectively for male and female mice. A maximum tolerated dose was achieved at the top dosage level tested in both of these studies based on excessive mortality. Thus, the doses tested are adequate for identifying a cancer risk. Accordingly, a cancer risk assessment is not needed.

Spinosad did not cause neurotoxicity in rats in acute, subchronic, or chronic toxicity studies.

6. Animal metabolism. There were no major differences in the bioavailability, routes or rates of excretion, or metabolism of spinosyn A and spinosyn D following oral administration in rats. Urine and fecal excretions were almost completed in 48-hours post-dosing. In addition, the routes and rates of excretion were not affected by repeated administration.

7. Metabolite toxicology. The residue of concern for tolerance setting purposes is the parent material (spinosyn A and spinosyn D). Thus, there is no need to address metabolite toxicity.

8. Endocrine disruption. There is no evidence to suggest that spinosad has an effect on any endocrine system.

C. Aggregate Exposure

1. Dietary exposure. For purposes of assessing the potential dietary exposure from use of spinosad on the raw agricultural commodities listed in this notice, as well as from other existing spinosad crop uses, a conservative estimate of aggregate exposure is determined by basing the theoretical maximum residue contribution (TMRC) on the proposed tolerance level for spinosad and assuming that 100% of the proposed new crops and other existing (registered for use) crops grown in the U.S. were treated with spinosad. The TMRC is obtained by multiplying the tolerance residue levels by the consumption data which estimates the amount of crops and related foodstuffs consumed by various population subgroups. The use of a tolerance level and 100% of crop treated clearly results in an overestimate of human exposure and a safety determination for the use of spinosad on crops cited in this summary that is based on a conservative exposure assessment. In addition, for the use of dermal application of spinosad to cattle, the risk assessment applies a conservative (overestimate) 35% of market share for the dermal application to cattle, to the tolerance levels for animal commodities based on existing crop uses.

Drinking water. Another potential source of dietary exposure is residues in drinking water. Based on the available environmental studies conducted with spinosad wherein its properties show little or no mobility in soil, there is no anticipated exposure to residues of spinosad in drinking water. In addition, there is no established maximum concentration level (MCL) for residues of spinosad in drinking water.

2. Non-dietary exposure. Spinosad is currently registered for use on a number of crops including cotton, fruits, and vegetables in the agriculture environment. Spinosad is also currently registered for outdoor use on turf and ornamentals at low rates of application (0.04 to 0.54 lb active ingredient per acre) and indoor use for drywood termite control (extremely low application rates used with no occupant exposure expected). Thus, the potential for non-dietary exposure to the general population is considered negligible.

D. Cumulative Effects

The potential for cumulative effects of spinosad and other substances that have a common mechanism of toxicity is also considered. In terms of insect control, spinosad causes excitation of the insect nervous system, leading to involuntary muscle contractions, prostration with tremors, and finally paralysis. These effects are consistent with the activation of nicotinic acetylcholine receptors by a mechanism that is clearly novel and unique among known insecticidal compounds. Spinosad also has effects on the gamma aminobatopic acid (GABA) receptor function that may contribute further to its insecticidal activity. Based on results found in tests with various mammalian species, spinosad appears to have a mechanism of toxicity like that of many amphiphilic cationic compounds. There is no reliable information to indicate that toxic effects produced by spinosad would be cumulative with those of any other pesticide chemical. Thus, it is appropriate to consider only the potential risks of spinosad in an aggregate exposure assessment. Spinosad is classified in a mechanism-of-action group of its own for the purpose of resistance management in insects and for rotation with other crop protection products.

E. Safety Determination

1. U.S. population. Using the conservative exposure assumptions and the RfD described above, the aggregate exposure to spinosad use on existing crop uses utilizes 36.9% of the RfD for the U.S. population from a previous EPA assessment based on the chronic population adjusted dose (cPAD) (as posted in the Federal Register of May 3, 2000 (65 FR 25721) (FRL-6555-9)). EPA generally has no concern for exposures below 100% of the RfD, because the RfD represents the level at or below which daily aggregate dietary exposure over a lifetime will not pose appreciable risks to human health. The new crop uses proposed in this notice are minor ones and are expected to contribute only a negligible impact to the RfD. Thus, it is clear that there is reasonable certainty that no harm will result from aggregate exposure to spinosad residues on existing and all pending crop uses listed in this notice.

2. Infants and children. In assessing the potential for additional sensitivity of infants and children to residues of spinosad, data from developmental toxicity studies in rats and rabbits and a 2-generation reproduction study in the rat is considered. The developmental toxicity studies are designed to evaluate adverse effects on the developing organism resulting from pesticide exposure during prenatal development. Reproduction studies provide information relating to effects from exposure to the pesticide on the reproductive capability and potential systemic toxicity of mating animals and on various parameters associated with the well-being of pups.

FFDCA section 408 provides that EPA may apply an additional safety factor for infants and children in the case of threshold effects to account for prenatal and postnatal toxicity and the completeness of the data base. Based on the current toxicological data requirements, the data base for spinosad Start Printed Page 64823relative to prenatal and postnatal effects for children is complete. Further, for spinosad, the NOAELs in the dog chronic feeding study which was used to calculate the RfD (0.027 mg/kg/day) are already lower than the NOAELs from the developmental studies in rats and rabbits by a factor of more than 10-fold. Concerning the reproduction study in rats, the pup effects shown at the HDT were attributed to maternal toxicity. Therefore, it is concluded that an additional uncertainty factor (UF) is not needed and that the RfD at 0.027 mg/kg/day is appropriate for assessing risk to infants and children. In addition, EPA has determined that the 10X factor to account for enhanced sensitivity of infants and children is not needed because:

i. The data provided no indication of increased susceptibility of rats or rabbits to in utero and/or postnatal exposure to spinosad. In the prenatal developmental toxicity studies in rats and rabbits and 2-generation reproduction in rats, effects in the offspring were observed only at or below treatment levels that resulted in evidence of parental toxicity.

ii. No neurotoxic signs have been observed in any of the standard required studies conducted.

iii. The toxicology data base is complete and there are no data gaps.

iv. Exposure data are complete or is estimated based on data that reasonably account for potential exposure.

Using the conservative exposure assumptions previously described (tolerance level residues), the percent RfD utilized by the aggregate exposure to residues of spinosad on existing crop uses is 81.9% for children 1 to 6 years old, the most sensitive population subgroup from an EPA assessment based on the cPAD (as posted in the Federal Register of May 3, 2000). Additional refinements to the dietary exposure based on market share information would reduce the exposure of children 1 to 6 years old to less than 50% the cPAD. Grain treated under a temporary tolerance is expected to contribute only a negligible impact to the RfD. Thus, based on the completeness and reliability of the toxicity data and the conservative exposure assessment, it is concluded that there is a reasonable certainty that no harm will result to infants and children from aggregate exposure to spinosad residues on the above proposed uses, including existing crop uses.

F. International Tolerances

There is no Codex maximum residue levels established for residues of spinosad.

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[FR Doc. 01-30913 Filed 12-13-01; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 6560-50-S