Chrysanthemum flowers

Chrysanthemum flowers contain a natural chemical, pyrethrin, that is toxic to many insects. Pyrethrin has a neurotoxic effect on mosquitos and other soft-bodied insects.

More than 70 years ago, scientists developed the class of chemistry known as pyrethroids, synthetic chemicals based on naturally occurring pyrethrin found in chrysanthemums.

After much testing and scientific review*, pyrethroids were determined to be an effective class of chemistry with a reduced environmental footprint. Pyrethroids are found in many common pesticide products for control of common pests such as mosquitos, ants, spiders, cockroaches, termites, and agricultural pests.

How Pyrethroids are Used

  • Pyrethroids have been used for over 40 years by homeowners, farmers, and commercial pest control operators.
  • They are used globally to protect human health from many infectious diseases carried by pests, including Lyme disease, Zika virus and West Nile virus.

* Pyrethroids have been reviewed and approved for use by many government regulatory agencies around the world, including the US EPA and EU regulatory authorities.  The use of pyrethroids has been approved in nearly 80 countries globally.

Additional Pyrethroid Facts

  • Pyrethroids strongly bind to sediment and other natural materials in water bodies, which limits bioavailability to non-target organisms.
  • Pyrethroids protect the nation’s food supply by helping farmers control pests that threaten a wide range of important crops.
  • Manufacturers of pyrethroids promote the responsible use of their pesticides through stewardship programs aimed at growers, consumers and professional pest control applicators.
  • Pyrethroids are widely used in products for agricultural, vector control (e.g. mosquitos), animal health, stored grain, home and garden, and turf and ornamental markets.

Additional Resources:

Benefits of Pyrethroids
Pyrethroid FAQs
Pyrethroids and Human Health
Pyrethroids and the Environment