How to replace damaged or missing pesticide labels or help with the ever so small print

Jug of weed killer without a label.

If you hold a pesticide or applicators license, you’re likely to have heard the phrase “Label is the LAW” or have been reminded at workshops or presentations to always READ the label before buying the pesticide, storing the pesticide, mixing and applying the pesticide, and disposing of any unused pesticide and/or empty containers. It is also your responsibility to ensure that the pesticide is labeled for the crop or site where you intend to make the application and that you have the necessary application equipment and any personal protective equipment (PPE) that may be required. This is all fine and good, but if the label and the information that is provided are so important, then why is the print often so small that one can hardly see it? What if the label is damaged and is now illegible, or is completely missing, or if you would like to have a copy for your records at your shop, then what?

There are two websites that provide labels for pesticides (i.e., herbicides, insecticides, fungicides, etc.):  the CDMS database and WSU’s Pesticide Information Center OnLine (PICOL) Database.

To use the CDMS database, type in the correct spelling of the product name and it will provide a PDF copy of the specimen label. After it is saved to a computer, one can print a new label that may be missing or damaged and keep it with the product. One can also increase the size of the font by zooming in, thereby making it easier to read.

The PICOL database provides information about pesticide products registered in either Oregon, Washington, or in both states. Searches for copies of the labels (PDF) can be done by state, intended user, EPA/State Reg. No., product name, the active ingredient, crop, and/or pest.

I always encourage landowners to have a legible copy at locations where pesticides are mixed and loaded, storage facilities, as well as accessible when spraying, in case there is an accident during the application process.

Dale Whaley professional headshot.

For questions or comments, contact Dale Whaley via email at or phone at 509-745-8531.