Updates: USDA resources, Airblast sprayer guide, and changed to the Pesticide Application Exclusion Zone Requirements

Passing along some important information from my colleague Mary Concklin at UCONN. -TB

From: Concklin, Mary
Sent: Thursday, January 21, 2021 3:51 PM
Subject: Fruit Update

Good afternoon,

The USDA has published a booklet titled Building Sustainable Farms, Ranches and Communities. A guide to federal programs. This 101 page publication has an exhaustive list of grant and assistance programs available for agriculture. It is well worth looking through to see if there are programs that can help your business. There may be additional programs you were unaware of. This booklet can be accessed here.

Airblast 101- Your Guide to Effective and Efficient Spraying, 2nd Edition is available. This 306 page guide is available for download free or order a hard copy on-demand, and can be found at

www.sprayers101.com/airblast101/ . E-books are expected to be forthcoming shortly.

TB note: I spoke with one of the authors of this, Dr. Jason Deveau, today. He has agreed to co-present the March 23 webinar, Tree Row Volume: What it is, why it matters, and how to use it. More details at: https://ag.umass.edu/fruit/news-events/new-england-winter-fruit-seminar-series

EPA Finalizes Improvements to Pesticide Application Exclusion Zone Requirements

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has finalized important improvements to requirements for the pesticide application exclusion zone (AEZ)—the area surrounding pesticide application equipment that exists only during outdoor production pesticide applications. EPA’s targeted changes improve the enforceability and workability of the AEZ requirements, decrease regulatory burdens for farmers, and maintain critical worker protections. These revisions are consistent with the 2018 Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA). The AEZ requirements are part of EPA’s agricultural Worker Protection Standard (WPS) regulations.

These targeted changes include:

· AEZ requirements only apply within the boundaries of the agricultural establishment, removing off-farm responsibilities that were difficult for state regulators to enforce.

· Immediate family members of farm owners are now exempted from all aspects of the AEZ requirements. Farm owners and their immediate family are now able to shelter in place inside closed buildings, giving farm owners and immediate family members flexibility to decide whether to stay on-site during pesticide applications, rather than compelling them to leave even when they feel safe remaining.

· New clarifying language has been added so that pesticide applications that are suspended due to individuals entering an AEZ may be resumed after those individuals have left the AEZ.

· Simplified criteria to determine whether pesticide applications are subject to the 25- or 100-foot AEZ.

No changes were made to the “Do Not Contact” provision that prohibits a handler/applicator and the handler’s employer from applying a pesticide in such a way that it contacts workers or other persons directly or through drift.

To read the rule in full, please visit: https://www.epa.gov/pesticide-worker-safety/worker-protection-standard-application-exclusion-zone

Reprinted from the Cornell Eastern NY Commercial Horticulture Newsletter, November 3, 2020

In case you didn’t know, Sunday January 24 is National Belly Laugh Day. Enjoy! (picture from Pinterest)

Have a great weekend.


Mary Concklin

Visiting Extension Educator – Fruit Production and IPM

IPM Program Coordinator

Department of Plant Science & Landscape Architecture

1376 Storrs Road, U-4067

University of Connecticut

Storrs, CT 06269-4067

Telephone: (860) 486-6449

Email: mary.concklin


Funded in part by USDA-NIFA