• May 7, 2020
  • WTO

EU Plant protection products | Non-renewal of approval of the active substance benfluralin

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Title of document
Draft Commission Implementing Regulation concerning the non-renewal of approval of the active substance benfluralin, in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 1107/2009 of the European Parliament and of the Council concerning the placing of plant protection products on the market, and amending the Annex to Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) No 540/2011 (4 page(s), in English)

This draft Commission Implementing Regulation provides that the approval of the active substance benfluralin is not renewed in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 1107/2009. EU Member States shall withdraw authorisations for plant protection products containing benfluralin as an active substance. The non-renewal of approval is based on the first evaluation of the substance for use as a pesticide active substance in the EU under Regulation (EC) No 1107/2009. The substance was formerly assessed and approved under Directive 91/414/ EEC. This decision only concerns the placing on the market of this substance and plant protection products containing it. Following non-approval and the expiry of all grace periods for stocks of products containing this substance, separate action will likely be taken on MRLs and a separate notification will be made in accordance with SPS procedures.

Notifying member: European Union


Objective tag
Protection of human health or safety; Protection of animal or plant life or health; Protection of the environment

In order for an active substance to be approved in accordance with Regulation (EC) No 1107/2009 (concerning the placing of plant protection products on the market), it must be demonstrated that the substance is not harmful to human health, animal health or the environment. Criteria are listed in Article 4 of the Regulation (and also detailed in Annex II thereto) which must be met to enable approval. During the evaluation and peer-review of benfluralin, a number of concerns and areas that could not be finalised were identified. These are detailed in the conclusion of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA). In particular a long-term risk to birds and mammals including the risk from secondary poisoning of earthworm-eating birds and mammals was identified as a critical area of concern. Furthermore, a long-term risk to aquatic organisms from benfluralin even when applying mitigation measures and the long-term risk to aquatic organisms from metabolites 371R and 372R could not be excluded. Finally, a genotoxic potential of an impurity cannot be excluded since the technical specification, including the level of that impurity, was not supported by the toxicological assessment. These concerns mean that benfluralin does not meet the approval criteria as outlined in Regulation (EC) No 1107/2009 and cannot be approved currently. Existing authorisations will need to be withdrawn; EU Member States must withdraw existing plant protection products containing benfluralin at the latest by 6 months from the date of entry into force. A period of grace in line with Article 46 of Regulation 1107/2009 is allowed for and shall expire at the latest 12 months from the entry into force (allowing for a final season of use).


Agency responsible
European Commission


  • Submission: 06/05/2020
  • Reception: 06/05/2020
  • Distribution: 06/05/2020
  • Final date for comments: 05/07/2020
  • Proposed date of adoption: N/A


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