Contaminated soil traced to 2 suppliers in Portland area

Environment

Clopyralid is an herbicide that results in deformities in a number of different plants

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — The Oregon Department of Agriculture has issued a warning about contaminated soil that has been traced back to two landscape supply distributors in the Portland metro area.

The ODA said soil and compost purchased from Deans Innovations and McFarlane’s is contaminated with clopyralid—an herbicide that results in deformities in a number of different plants. The department was first alerted of the problem in mid-May when a gardener called to report deformities that had grown in plants that came into contact with soil purchased from Deans Innovations. The ODA has received a number of calls since the first report.

Officials said they are working with both companies to identify the source of the contamination.

In a Saturday statement, the president of Deans said the two products that clopyralid was found in, a batch of steer manure and a batch of mushroom compost, have both been pulled from the shelves. The president also said the company was in the process of seeking out “new organic supplier relationships” as well as “alternative nutrient supplements for our White Lightning product should we continue to find disparities between an organically certified product and test results that are contrary to this certification.”

In the meantime, there are options available for gardeners who may have contaminated soil.

Those affected by the contamination can file a Report of Loss form with the ODA. Gardeners who have purchased the soil should avoid using it for several months so the clopyralid can break down, according to ODA advice.

Contaminated soils and compost should not be taken to community compost or yard debris facilities, but instead disposed at one of the following locations:

  1. Metro South in Oregon City, 503-234-3000
  2. Hillsboro Landfill, 503-640-9427 extension 0

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