FAIRFAX, Va. — The National Pest Management Association’s Board of Directors voted unanimously on July 22 to host PestWorld as a virtual convention instead of the previously scheduled in-person event in Nashville. NPMA said the virtual event still will include world-class keynote speakers, educational sessions and the industry’s largest trade show. Dates for V-PestWorld will remain Oct. 13-16.

NPMA conducted qualitative and quantitative market research with stakeholders, including NPMA members, past attendees, speakers and suppliers. NPMA said considerations included the fact that Nashville has limited group gatherings to a maximum of 25 people; the mayoral announcement that this phase would be in place for the foreseeable future; an infection rate for the COVID-19 virus trending higher in Nashville; quarantines imposed on people visiting from certain states; travel bans; and the health and safety concerns for all attendees.

“Many of our sponsors, exhibitors, speakers and pest control companies have a travel ban in place through the remainder of 2020 so they would not be able to attend any face-to-face events,” said Alexis Wirtz, senior vice president of meetings and conventions for NPMA.

“It’s not an easy path for any of us, and none of us have a roadmap to rely on. After several months of looking at multiple options on how to host PestWorld 2020, the board voted unanimously today to put into action what we feel is the best option for the industry,” said Scott Steckel, NPMA president. “We are really pleased that the PMP and supplier communities have expressed such overwhelming support of NPMA and this V-convention. We look forward to an exciting event.”

“With the decision of the board, our focus now shifts to planning and executing the best virtual convention possible for our industry. Although I’m disappointed we couldn’t all get together in Nashville this October, I’m hopeful that a virtual event will allow for an even greater participation from those in our industry,” said Justin McCauley, NPMA president-elect.

For more information visit www.npmapestworld.org.

EPA Orders Amazon, eBay to Stop Sale of Certain Pesticide Products

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently ordered Amazon Services and eBay to stop selling a wide range of pesticide products. EPA says these products are unregistered, misbranded or restricted-use pesticides, and/or pesticide devices that make false or misleading claims. As two of the largest e-commerce marketplaces, both companies oversee millions of product listings, either directly or via third-party sales. The products subject to EPA’s orders also include several products that are marketed with false or misleading claims of efficacy against the novel coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, the cause of COVID-19.

“These stop sale orders to Amazon and eBay demonstrate the Trump Administration’s continued commitment to protecting the health and safety of Americans,” said EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler in a press release. “We remain vigilant against the claims of producers that falsely assert their efficacy and safety. Of particular concern are products that falsely claim to be effective against COVID-19. It is our duty to continue transparent communication with the public on unregistered products that may cause injury to consumers, and immediately remove them from commerce.”

“American consumers need to know that the pesticide products they purchase online are effective and safe for their use,” said EPA Assistant Administrator for Enforcement and Compliance Assurance Susan Bodine. “The orders we are issuing are two examples of EPA’s continuing commitment to stop unlawful sales of unregistered, mislabeled and restricted-use pesticides on retail websites.”

“The proliferation of unregistered pesticides in the e-commerce marketplace, especially during this unprecedented time, poses a significant and immediate health risk to consumers, children, pets and others exposed to the products,” said EPA Region 10 Administrator Chris Hladick.

In April, Administrator Wheeler held discussions with Amazon, eBay and other e-marketplaces on the availability of products that are unregistered, are registered but may be used only by trained applicators, or that make unsubstantiated and potentially dangerous claims. Despite those discussions, EPA said that Amazon and eBay have thus far failed to consistently keep unregistered, misbranded or restricted-use pesticides, and pesticide devices, off their websites.

EPA’s action prohibits Amazon and eBay from distributing, selling or offering for sale a specific list of products. (To view the stop sale orders, visit the “online extras” section of www.pctonline.com.)

None of the pesticides in the Amazon order are registered with EPA, which is a requirement for sale in the U.S. In addition to unregistered pesticides, the eBay order includes pesticides classified for restricted use. It is unlawful to sell these types of products to the general public because they have the potential to cause injury to human health and the environment without additional restrictions, EPA says.

NPMA Virtual Academy Kicked Off in July

FAIRFAX, Va. — NPMA Academy traditionally has been an in-person event with hands-on team-building activities for developing and emerging industry leaders. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic this year’s event is being held virtually, so while the venue has changed, NPMA says its Leadership Networking Community (LNC) and lead sponsor Corteva Agriscience have put together a program to deliver the “Academy experience” and those same relationship-building and business growth experiences in a different platform.

NPMA chose “Superheroes” as a theme for this year’s Academy and NPMA CEO Dominique Stumpf kicked off the July virtual event noting that “this theme could not be more fitting, because in the state of the current world, every single one of you are heroes. You are the protectors of public health and property. It is NPMA’s mission to support you and your efforts to be professional, knowledgeable and profitable.”

Stumpf then introduced Mark Neterer. business leader, pest management, Corteva Agriscience, who thanked attendees for participating. Neterer said although he misses the in-person event, he is excited that the virtual format gives attendees the opportunity to have “the Academy experience” throughout the year. Academy is about “getting to know a lot of people, learn from each other, develop some business skills and create networks for each other so that we can continue to do great things for this industry,” Neterer said.

Following the introductory comments, Academy attendees split off into breakout rooms where they got acquainted with their team members and received an overview of the event from team captains. Day one concluded with a team-building scavenger hunt. Each team chose a member who was given the task of finding five random items throughout their house. The Blue team took top honors thanks to the scavenger-hunting skills of Clint Sowle (Ecolab).

NPMA Academy continues through October with events taking place every other Thursday from 3 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. (EDT). Learn more at www.npmapestworld.org.

Industry Professional Cliff Mohrhaus Passes Away

Mohrhaus

ATLANTA — Cliff Mohrhaus, a professional in the chemical sales field for more than 40 years, passed away in hospice on June 19. He was 73.

Mohrhaus most recently worked as a consultant, forming Mohrhaus Consulting in 2006. In this position, he called on his industry experience in management, sales, marketing, research and purchasing.

Prior to becoming a consultant he served as vice president of professional products for Control Solutions from 2004-05, and as Verdicon’s business segments/strategic account manager from 2003-04. He also held sales and management positions at Dow Chemical for nearly 30 years.

Dr. Barry Pittendrigh Hired as Purdue University Osmun Endowed Chair

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — In July, Purdue University announced that Dr. Barry Pittendrigh, a Michigan State University Foundation Professor, accepted the position as the Osmun Endowed Chair in Urban Entomology at Purdue University.

In the early 2000s, members of the pest control industry formed the Purdue University Endowed Chair Committee to raise funds for the creation of the John V. Osmun Endowed Chair. In addition to the Osmun endowed chair, the university also is home to the O. Wayne Rollins/Orkin Chair in Urban Entomology. A named endowed professorship is one of the highest honors a university can bestow on a member — or past member — of its faculty. It is an academic position permanently supported with the revenue from an endowment fund specifically set up for that purpose.

Pittendrigh

In a communication to the entomology community, Stephen Cameron, head of Purdue’s Entomology Department, wrote: “I am delighted to announce that Dr. Barry Pittendrigh has agreed to accept the position as the Osmun Endowed Chair in Urban Entomology. The Osmun Endowment honors Dr. John Osmun, former department head in entomology, a specialist in urban entomology and pest management who was responsible for building the reputation and scope of many of the signature urban programs within our department including the Pest Management Conference and the correspondence courses for pest management professionals. It was funded by a long-running campaign of our alumni and industry partners, finally vesting due to an untargeted bequest in 2016.

“Dr. Pittendrigh, currently an MSU Foundation Professor at Michigan State University, is a specialist in insect genetics and genomics with a magnificent research track record focusing on the genetics of pesticide resistance, with over 180 publications, and has received over $30 million in career competitive funding. He is both a graduate of our department (MS 1994) and a former faculty member (assistant professor 2000-04, associate professor 2004-08) and was honored with the John V. Osmun Award for Professional Achievement in 2016, our department’s highest alumni award. He leads an innovative program in outreach and public education (SAWBo) focused on multi-lingual tools, and a strong track record as an educator and a student mentor. Most recently, he has developed significant experience directing large collaborative projects and most recently led the USAID Feed the Future, Legume Innovation Lab. Dr. Pittendrigh has an expansive and compelling vision for taking the Center for Urban & Industrial Pest Management (CUIPM) into the future, and continuing our leadership in urban research, education and public engagement.

“I would like to thank everyone who contributed to the search for the Osmun Endowed Chair, particularly the tireless work of the search committee, Mr. Matt Dittman, Dr. Ashley Leach, Dr. Laramy Enders, Dr. Ameya Gondhalekar, Dr. Linda Mason and Dr. Doug Richmond (chair). Additionally, I would like to thank Judy Dold, Dave Mueller and Joe Long, who as representatives of the Osmun Donors group, and leaders in the pest management industry, played crucial roles both in raising funds to make the endowment a reality and in conducting the interviews for this position. Finally, I would like to thank Dean Plaut and Dr. Russell, Department Head in Agricultural Science Education & Communication, for their work towards a partner faculty hire for Dr. Pittendrigh’s wife Dr. Bello-Bravo, an impressive social scientist in her own right.

“Please join me in welcoming Dr. Pittendrigh back to Purdue, and in thanking everyone who contributed towards this great outcome.”

Now Available from PCT: Fly Field Guide, 2nd Edition

VALLEY VIEW, Ohio — Now available from PCT is the PCT Field Guide for the Management of Structure-Infesting Flies, 2nd edition. Edited by leading entomologist Stoy Hedges, the completely revised and updated second edition is nearly double the size of the original, offering valuable insights about fly identification, biology and control.

“This new edition contains many new photographs better illustrating identification characteristics among structure-infesting flies,” said Hedges. “The 4-color ID section is greatly enhanced with good photos of most every fly group or species included in the guide.”

Hedges added, “The fly field guide is designed to assist pest professionals in the field at the point of customer contact to better to be able to identify the pest on-site and to provide recommendations as to where to find the source of the target fly and for measures to remediate and control the infestation.”

Order at https://store.pctonline.com/en or call 800/456-0707. Price is $14.95.

This latest edition features all-new profiles of the following fly species:

  • Freeloader Flies
  • Little House Fly
  • Biting Midges
  • Ked Flies
  • Non-Biting Midges
  • Tachinid Flies
  • •obber Flies
  • Bot Flies

ICUP Announces New Website With Searchable Proceedings

BARCELONA — A new permanent website with searchable access to all papers and posters published in the International Conference on Urban Pests (ICUP) Proceedings has been released by the ICUP executive committee. The site acts as a focal point for the nine previous conferences along with a link to the forthcoming 10th ICUP in Barcelona to be held on the rescheduled dates of Sept. 13-15, 2021.

All papers and posters published in the ICUP Proceedings can be accessed on the site. Documents are keyword searchable and can be downloaded, in full, free-of-charge.

Almost 30 years of international urban pest science are chronicled, ranging from the advent of insecticide gel baits, the bed bug resurgence, the rise of rodenticide resistance, termite baiting techniques, invasive species, along with the development of natural products and biological agents.

There are more than 1,000 papers at www.icup.org.uk/icup-proceedings-search.

Rollins Acquires Largest Independent Pest Control Provider in Australia

ATLANTA — Rollins announced that one of its Australian subsidiaries has acquired Adams Pest Control Pty Ltd, the largest independent pest control provider in Australia. The company says this acquisition solidifies Rollins’ national coverage in Australia. Adams Pest Control will join the Orkin Australia portfolio of brands alongside Allpest, Murray Pest Control, Scientific Pest Management and Statewide Pest Control.

Adams Pest Control has a long- established history in Australia, beginning in 1944. Not only does the company have more than 75 years of experience in all aspects of general pest control and wildlife control, Rollins said Adams is a market leader in the greater Melbourne and Adelaide areas. Peter Taylor, director and general manager of Adams Pest Control, will be joining the Orkin Australia team with the acquisition.

Matt Turek, division president of Orkin Canada, Australia and Asia, said, “I am thrilled to have Adams Pest Control join our family of brands in Australia. Their long history of exceptional customer service is a great complement to Orkin’s growing portfolio of business throughout Australia.”

PestWeb Podcast Launched by Veseris

AUSTIN, Texas — Launched earlier this year by Veseris, the PestWeb Podcast gives PMPs a unique view on national and local trends in pest management technology and services, the company says. Pulling together insights and advice from hosts Erin Monteagudo and Andrew Assir, along with an array of industry pest and product experts, Veseris says the podcast is giving professionals a growing library of ideas for boosting their business efficiency in a changing market.

Each month, PestWeb says its podcast provides access to new business tips, market trends and in-depth product advice. From suggestions on how to grow your business with T&O services to a close look at must-have mosquito control products, the PestWeb Podcast is connecting technicians and managers to tips on upselling, entering new markets, increasing customer satisfaction and more.

Episodes range from 30 minutes to an hour, making them an ideal choice for listening on the road or in the office, Veseris says.

PMPs can access the latest episodes of the PestWeb Podcast on multiple desktop and mobile platforms, including iTunes, Spotify, Soundcloud and Google Play. All episodes are also available at PestWeb by Veseris.