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Saturday, June 4, 2011

USCC Issues Herbicide Warning

In late May, the U.S. Composting Council issued a warning to composters who receive yard trimmings as part of their carbon source.  Here is a portion of the formal warning:

The USCC is informing the composting industry and consumers that grass from treated lawns could end up in a compost pile, and unlike most herbicides, Imprelis will survive the composting process and still be active in the finished compost. Preliminary research has shown that Imprelis does not break down significantly faster than the leaves and grass in the compost, so the concentration stays about the same.  An unsuspecting gardener using contaminated compost could end up damaging their flowers and vegetables, most of which are also broad-leafed
DuPont™ Imprelis™ herbicide packageAccording to the Dupont Imprelis site,  DuPont™ Imprelis™ herbicide contains a single active ingredient and exhibits favorable environmental and toxicological characteristics.  It seems favorable environmental characteristics has varied interpretations.

As commercial composting operations become common place, understanding the impact of residential and commercial landscape practices on the end compost is imperative.  With Zero Waste Zones motivating the foodservice industry to embrace organics collection for composting, integrity of the developing systems are a top priority.  It is a comfort to know  the USCC is at the forefront of addressing such issues.

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