• Grow a Lush Garden Organically
  • Learn To Manage Weeds Without Chemical Pesticides
  • Learn to Manage Pests Naturally
  • Link to SK Organic Resources
  • Learn to Keep Insects Out of your Crops
  • LIving Near Fields Increases Pesticide Exposure
  • Driving Near Recently Sprayed Fields Exposes People to Pesticides
  • Learn About Pesticides in Foods
  • SNAP Tour of Organic Vegetable Garden
  • SNAP Display at Event

Asking for Alternatives to Pesticides

SNAP's retailer survey

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SNAP's retailer survey prepared in 2007.

The survey could not be administered because garden centers and other stores selling pesticides to home owners (called domestic vendors) are not currently required to be licensed in Saskatchewan. This means nobody working in such stores needs to know anything about the chemical pesticides they sell, or their alternatives. Therefore, Saskatchewan Agriculture does not have a list of such stores as they are not regulated.

Only 2 stores accepted to fill in the survey and they both identified lack of training as a barrier to carrying more 'reduced-risk' products. At the time neither carried very many alternatives products. The survey includes all the licensed 'reduced-risk' products SNAP could indentify in spring 2007.Use it to shop and educate your garden center to carry these true alternatives.

At that time, neem products were not registered in Canada as a pesticides, only as a leaf shine.

Buying pesticides products from stores that have no staff knowledgeable about pesticides or their reduced-risk alternatives is the rule rather than the exception in Saskatchewan. Weeding through all the chemicals to find the reduced-risk product one is looking for is also the rule at present. Many stores still carry pesticides indoors, thus contaminating the air with the vapours. While you shop for pesticides in those stores, you are exposed to pesticides, and the containers and products you get are also contaminated.

In 2008, there is still no Saskatchewan law or regulation requiring that any 'domestic*" vendor of pesticides be licensed or has any training. Domestic vendors sells to home owners versus agricultural or commercial client. That is why Paule Hjertaas developed the retailer survey above.

 Loblaws pesticide-free gardening commitment  In 2007, in spite of their prior commitment, one Extra Foods ( part of the Loblaws chain) in Regina had loads of Weed and Feed products for sale.

SNAP- letter of encouragement to Home Depot to only sell less toxic pesticides. 2006

Home Depot claimed they would be pesticide-free by the end of the 2008.

In spring 2008, Saskatchewan Agriculture checked Home Depot, Rona and Canadian Tire for green products. It seems that the same chemical pyrethrins (see below) are just getting repackaged with "green labels". This is called 'greenwashing" (the practice of promoting environmentally friendly programs to deflect attention from an organization's environmentally unfriendly or less savory activities). In this case it means promoting a product as green while it is not. I believe it is still the case in 2012 although I cannot check the stores myself because I get too sick in the pesticide aisles.

Pyrethrins - SNAP does not consider pyrethrins as acceptable pesticides.

Quick Links to Alternative Pest Control Sites 

SNAP's Alternatives page