Are herbicides (weed killers) considered pesticides?
Weed killers are the same as herbicides. Does that mean they are pesticides?
According to the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)'s definition
of a pesticide, (YES) a herbicide (or weed killer) IS a pesticide. The
reason we use EPA's definition is that they are the federal agency that
regulates and registers all pesticide products in the United States.
All (US) applicators apply pesticides under regulation of the EPA and
their state, territorial, or tribal pesticide regulatory authorities.
EPA's definition is as follows:
"A pesticide is any substance or mixture of substances intended for:
- repelling, or
- mitigating any pest.
Though often misunderstood to refer only to insecticides, the term pesticide also applies to herbicides, fungicides, and various other substances used to control pests.
Under United States law, a pesticide is also any substance or mixture of substances intended for use as a plant (growth) regulator, defoliant, or desiccant."