April 2020

Changes to Pesticide Management in Ontario

Received from Robyn Kurtes – Director, Environmental Policy Branch on April 15th, 2020 at 6:45pm

Ontario is bringing its pesticide management policies into the 21st century to keep Ontario open for business while ensuring strong environmental protection.

We are taking steps to harmonize Ontario’s pesticides classes with the federal government to remove Ontario’s duplicative classification process and create a simpler, more efficient process for the sale and use of all pesticides in Ontario.

These changes will bring Ontario in line with all other provinces, creating a level playing field for businesses and farmers while protecting human health and the environment, a part of our Made-in-Ontario Environment Plan commitment to maintain a healthy economy and a healthy environment.

Using the federal categories, and eliminating the provincial-level classification process, removes the primary purpose of the Ontario Pesticide Advisory Committee. Since their role advising on classification is no longer needed, the committee will be dissolved.

It is important to note that while we’ve aligned with federal classification, we have maintained the cosmetic pesticides ban. We created an Allowable List of pesticide ingredients for cosmetic uses that follows defined criteria. This new approach does not change the current list of pesticides allowed for cosmetic purposes.

Ontario remains committed to restrictions on the sale and use of neonicotinoid-treated seeds. After five years of these restrictions, we’ve made changes to administrative requirements for farmers and seed vendors to ensure that the necessary information is still collected and retained, while reducing duplication and paperwork where possible to alleviate administrative burden.

We will implement these changes to the Pesticides Act and Pesticide Regulation in phases.

Changes related to the sale and use of neonicotinoid-treated seed came into effect April 9, 2020. Most other changes related to the realigned classes of pesticides and removal of the pesticide classification process will come into effect May 1, 2020.

Some changes related to revised requirements for farmers, vendors and pesticide operator businesses will come into effect January 1, 2021 to ensure enough transition time for awareness of revised requirements.

You can read more about the changes to the Pesticide Act and changes to the Pesticide Regulation on the Environmental Registry.

Please contact us if you have specific questions or concerns.


Structural Pest Management Association of Ontario
1370 Don Mills Road, Suite 300
Toronto, Ontario M3B 3N7