The Consumer Labeling Initiative (CLI) is a voluntary, cooperative effort to foster pollution prevention, empower consumer choice, and improve understanding by presenting clear, consistent, and useful safe use, environmental, and health information on household consumer product labels. Government, industry, and other groups are working together in the CLI to make it easier for consumers to find, read, and understand label information, enabling consumers to choose the right products for their needs and values and to use and dispose of them safely and with minimal environmental impact. A
The CLI project has several phases. In 1996, EPA went directly to individual consumers to learn what they thought about existing labels on indoor insecticides, outdoor house and garden pesticides, and household hard surface cleaners, including ant and roach products, weedkillers, and floor and basin, tub, and tile cleaners. EPA also invited individuals and groups to give their ideas about label problems and solutions, and looked for research already done by others. All of that preliminary work is summarized in the Consumer Labeling Initiative Phase I Report, which was completed on September 30, 1996.
Beginning in 1997 and running throughout 1998, some of the companies that make these consumer products organized a nationwide research project to help EPA and all of the CLI partner organizations learn more from customers about how to make label information more understandable and useful. The companies worked with all of the CLI partners to design that research, using company and trade association funding. With the help of research, EPA has begun to work with companies to make the language on pesticide product labels simpler and more direct, and the format of labels easier to follow. We published the CLI Phase II Report in December 1999, containing information on all of these research and label improvement activities.
In the Spring of 2000, EPA and its partners will be working together to launch a national campaign to encourage consumers to "Read the Label First!." The goal of the campaign will be to get people to focus on and understand the health, safety, and environmental information available on labels in order to choose the right products for their needs and to avoid accidents and other problems. The campaign will also help people to understand the ways in which labels will be changing as a result of the CLI project.
By their nature, many pesticides may pose some risk to humans, animals, or the environment because they are designed to kill or otherwise adversely affect living organisms. At the same time, pesticides are often useful because of their ability to control disease-causing organisms, insects, weeds, or other pests. The pesticide label is your guide to using pesticides safely and effectively. It contains pertinent information that you should read and understand before you use a pesticide product.
EPA has created a label with pop-up text that explains the basic statements found on pesticide product labels. As you pass your mouse pointer over the different parts of the label a window will open and provide an explanation of the label statement.
Do you have questions about the CLI project? Send the EPA email at [email protected]. Want to file comments or share your ideas on the CLI project? Send email to [email protected], and put "AR-139 Consumer Labeling Initiative" in the subject line. Or you can mail your comments to:
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