Home Depot, Sears, RONA and Canadian Tire Respond
On March 17, 2014, Friends of the Earth Canada sent letters to the four biggest garden centre retailers in Canada, asking them to:
- Commit to not sell nursery bedding plants and vegetable plants pre-treated with neonicotinoids
- Institute a corporate policy that bans use of neonics on and in their facilities and throughout their supply chain, and
- Educate their customers on why their company made a decision to protect bees and other pollinators.
Since sending these letters, we released Gardeners Beware showing that neonic contamination of nursery plants is widespread and at levels harmful to bees and other pollinators.
Please join us to influence these companies to act to take neonics out of their supply chain by signing the petition.
Here are excerpts from each response to our March letter:
Home Depot, July 7, 2014: “In terms of our progress to date, we can confirm that none of the chemical products or seeds, on our shelves in Canada, contain or have been treated with a neonicotinoid. This was one of the recommendations included in your report. As well, to identify an appropriate course of action with our live goods, we continue to work with our vendor and industry partners to understand the science behind bee health and pesticides. It’s important to us that we understand the research and data to better understand the effects to Honey Bee’s from Neonicotinoids used on select plants. We are currently looking into a number of options to help raise awareness of this issue, including have our supplier label plants that they provide us with.”
Sears Canada, April 14, 2014: “Having a health insect populations is important to us. In line with our concerns, we are keeping abreast of any new developments and findings as regards neonicotinoids. We read with interest the EU restrictions on the use of various neonicotinois. We are also following the work EPA is carrying out to re-evaluate the safety of certain insecticides, such as imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiamethoxam.”
RONA, June 26, 2014: “We have been paying close attention to the neonicotinoid pesticides issue over the past several months and we are currently in communication with our suppliers to assess the situation.
Since we favour an approach based on dialogue and continuous improvement with our suppliers, we will complete our due diligence with them and then apply the business recommendations accordingly.”
Canadian Tire, April 11, 2014: “Since receiving your letter, Canadian Tire has initiated targeted communications with our vendors to better understand how neonicotinoids are used in the plant products that they supply to us. We have also been monitoring the progress of Health Canada’s re-evaluation of neonicotinoid insecticides through their Pest Management Regulatory Agency and the Canadian government’s cooperative research with the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the California Department of Pesticide Regulation.”