Los Angeles, California, USA - 29 Jule 2019: Illustrative Editorial of EPA.GOV website homepage. United States Environmental Protection Agency logo visible on display screen.

With the holiday season in full-swing, it’s important for cleaning staffs to have reliable information when making safe decisions on infection control products. With that in mind, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced an indefinite extension of COVID-19 activation of the emerging viral pathogens (EVP) guidance for antimicrobial pesticides. EPA’s EVP guidance for antimicrobial pesticides is a part of the federal government’s pandemic preparedness, allowing manufacturers to provide the Agency with data, even in advance of an outbreak, demonstrating that their products are effective against hard-to-kill viruses.

EPA activated its EVP guidance for antimicrobial pesticides for the first time in January 2020, in response to the emergence of SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in the United States. For more than 12 months, the Agency allowed for expedited review and approval of surface disinfectant products for use against SARS-CoV-2, including accelerated review for products seeking to add EVP claims to product labels. To date, EPA has added approximately 400 products with emerging viral pathogens claims to its list of Disinfectants for Coronavirus (List N).

Typically, registrants must remove EVP claims from consumer messaging no later than 24 months after the original notification of the outbreak, unless directed otherwise by EPA. With this extension, EPA will now provide a notification at least six months before inactivating the EVP guidance for SARS-CoV-2 to allow registrants time to adjust product marketing materials as required.

In related news, the EPA recently named the American Cleaning Institute as a Safer Choice Partner of the Year, noting the organization's toxicological reviews that led to eight chemicals being added to EPA’s Safer Chemical Ingredients List (SCIL). Read more on their efforts here