With Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) leading the charge for testing pesticides for off-label ingredients, it has become increasingly commonplace for pesticides to contain trace residues of off-label chemicals. In 2016 a cannabis lab in Oregon decided to test the product Guardian Mite Spray and detected the chemical abamectin. This was reported to the ODA and a subsequent stop sale was issued. Shortly thereafter, Mighty Wash tested positive for pyrethrins. Now, the latest product that has come to light is Azatrol, a product containing azadirachtin, which is the concentrated extract from neem oil. The Oregon Department of Agriculture issued a stop sale for the Azatrol stating: “ODA’s actions come following an investigation of the product and laboratory analysis that found the presence of the pesticide active ingredients permethrin, bifenthrin, cypermethrin, cyfluthrin, and chlorpyrifos, none of which are listed on either product label.”
Azatrol was OMRI (Organic Materials Review Institute) certified and has been widely accepted and used by the cannabis industry. It is unfortunate that this situation had to arise, and the Cannabis Horticultural Association (CHA) has taken a proactive step by creating a dedicated page entitled Pesticide Advisory Alerts. Normally each state will issue it’s own separate alert, so the CHA will create a hub for all state alerts so farmers wishing to maintain a certain set of organic standards will have the working knowledge to keep abreast of this burgeoning industry.
We believe that use the use of certain OMRI certified products is within proper management practices for cannabis. The Pesticide Advisory Alerts page will give the farmers another tool to ensure compliance with increasingly strict testing standards. We welcome input from our peers, either through submitting information or asking questions. We would like to thank ODA for their work for leading the way towards a cleaner future for the cannabis industry.