Total U.S. Pesticide Usage Reaches 2.23 Billion Pounds in
July 19, 1994
In 1993, total U.S. pesticide use reached an estimated 2.23
billion pounds, up from 2.15 billion pounds in 1990,
according to the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) June
1994 report, "Pesticide Industry Sales And Usage: 1992 and
1993 Market Estimates." The study, which presents an
overview of the U.S. pesticide industry for 1992 and 1993,
reports that U.S. pesticide user purchases account for one-
third of the total world market in dollar terms, and one-
fourth of the total volume of active ingredient.
During recent years, use of active ingredient in the U.S. has
remained relatively stable at 1.1 billion pounds. The volume
of pesticides used for agricultural purposes also remained
steady at approximately three-fourths of the total use. The
EPA attributes the stabilization to "lower application rates
due to the introduction of more potent pesticides, more
efficient use of pesticides, and lower farm commodity
Other findings include:
-- Pesticides were used on more than 900,000 farms and in
about 69 million households in the U.S.
-- Annual pesticide user expenditures totaled approximately
$8.5 billion in 1993.
-- Farmers' expenditures on pesticides equal about 4.2% of
total farm production expenditures, up from 3.9% in 1991.
-- Herbicides are the leading type of pesticides, in terms of
both user expenditures and volume used. Atrazine and
metolachlor are the two most widely used pesticides in U.S.
agricultural crop production.
-- More pesticides and pesticide uses have been registered
during the past year than in any year since 1975. In 1993,
EPA registered 21 new uses and 20 new chemicals. In 1990, 8
uses and 8 chemicals were registered. The EPA attributes the
increase to improvements in the registration process and
industry's expedient submission of data.
The EPA report notes that the agency is working in
conjunction with the United States Department of Agriculture
(USDA) to develop reduction plans for pesticide use and
associated risks as part of a food safety initiative. In
order to improve and increase the availability of information
regarding national pesticide use patterns, EPA has expanded
its surveying activities to include more non-agricultural
uses. The agency is collecting data from non-agricultural
certified/commercial applicators that will be compiled and
submitted in a report to Congress. Survey results will be
published in late 1994.
Source: Arnold L. Aspelin, Pesticide Industry Sales and
Usage: 1992 and 1993 Market Estimates, Environmental
Protection Agency, June 1994.
Contact: Arnold L. Aspelin, Senior Economic Advisor,
Biological and Economic Analysis Division, OPP/OPPTS/USEPA
(503W), 401 M St., SW, Washington, DC 20460; phone (703) 308-
8200; fax (703) 308-8091.
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