Pesticide poisoning calls

Unintentional, non-occupational pesticide-related calls to the Minnesota Poison Control System:

Data on calls to the MN Poison Control System about pesticide poisoning can be a useful way to look at trends in pesticide poisonings.


About 3% of all calls to the MN Poison Control System were about pesticide exposure concerns. In 2021 there were 919 pesticide poisoning calls.


There is a seasonal pattern of calls to the MN Poison Control System about pesticide poisonings. Pesticide calls increase in the summer and peak in July, probably due to increased use of pesticides during that time.


Overall trends show pesticide calls for children under age 4  are going down, while calls for adults age 20 to 64 has plateaued. From 2005 to 2021, the number of calls for other age groups stayed fairly consistent.


Most pesticide calls to the MN Poison Control System are for concerns about children under age 4 exposed to pesticides. For the younger age groups, there are more calls about boys being poisoned than girls. Young children are mostly exposed by accidentally ingesting household pesticides.

Another group of concern are adults age 20 to 64. This group probably uses household pesticides the most. In this age group, there are more calls about females being poisoned. Adults in this age group are mostly exposed through skin contact, inhaling, or ingesting pesticides by accident or misuse of insecticides and herbicides.  


In 2021, the Minnesota Poison Control System received 418 calls about pesticide exposures in children under age 5. Calls received about children under age 5 are primarily for insecticides, and rarely for exposure to fumigants or fungicides.



Last updated January 2022. Updates are made when data become available.