Re: The Dec. 18 Maine Voices column, “Portland’s effort to reduce use of toxic pesticides is sorely needed”:

I applaud the city for addressing this issue, but let’s keep one thing in mind: A pesticide is a pesticide whether it is organic or synthetic. All pesticides can be toxic.

Do an online search for “pyganic label,” an organic-certified botanical insecticide derived from chrysanthemums. It will kill over 100 insects that it comes in contact with, including pollinators. Other cautions: “hazardous to humans and domestic animals” and “this pesticide is highly toxic to fish.”

The Maine Board of Pesticides Control slogan is “Think first … spray last” – and, I would add, “Read the label.”

Jack McAdam