Office of Pesticide Consultation & Analysis (OPCA)
The Governor's 1991 Reorganization Plan stripped CDFA of its pesticide regulatory authority, relocating it within the newly-formed Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) inside Cal/EPA. As a quid pro quo for this change, Food & Agricultural Code Section 11454.2 requires DPR to consult with CDFA on proposed pesticide regulations; consultation is carried out under a Memorandum of Agreement signed on February 6, 1992. OPCA performs CDFA's consultative role, and is funded by a supplemental slice (up to three-fourths mill) of the pesticide mill assessment that funds DPR.
OPCA's consultative activities focus on potential pesticide regulatory impacts and pest management alternatives that may mitigate or prevent such impacts on production agriculture.
Outside research contracts, primarily with the University of California, provide a source of independent, unbiased expertise. In 2012 we completed a major report on alternatives to emulsifiable concentrate pesticide formulations which have been a key component of DPR efforts to dampen volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions. Our current primary research focus is on DPR's chloropicrin mitigation proposal. We also hope to complete within the next year or so a long-term research project evaluating the future prospects for using biological control to combat arthropod pests (with special emphasis on invasive species). We anticipate considerable future involvement with surface water issues, as well as the neonicotinoid class of insecticides.