Pesticide Registration Toolkit

Pesticide properties

Pesticide property databases

In the course of the evaluation of a pesticide, a registrar may wish to access reputable databases that provide pesticide properties for individual active ingredients. The most important pesticide properties used in pesticide registration refer to: physical and chemical characteristics, toxicology and metabolism, environmental fate and behaviour, and ecotoxicology.

The databases listed below have been selected because they are regularly updated and because they apply quality control to the data which are included. Depending on the type of assessment that needs to be carried out, it may be useful to access more than one of the databases below.




Pesticide Property Database (FOOTPRINT)

PPDB: Pesticide Properties DataBase

Bio-pesticides Database

BPDB : Bio-pesticides Database

Veterinary Substances Database

VSDB: Veterinary Substances Database

European Union endpoint lists

EU Pesticides database

EFSA OpenFoodTox database

OpenFoodTox database

US-EPA ECOTOX Knowledgebase

ECOTOX Knowledgebase 

PubChem database

PubChem search



Pesticide Property Database (FOOTPRINT)

The Pesticide Properties Database (FOOTPRINT PPDB) is a comprehensive relational database of pesticide physicochemical and ecotoxicological data. The database has been developed by the Agriculture & Environment Research Unit (AERU) at the University of Hertfordshire (UK), as part of the EU-funded FOOTPRINT project. The database covers both pesticide active ingredients and a large number of metabolites.

The main sources of information used for the PPDB are the monographs produced as part of the EU review process; where EU documents are not available, alternative sources are used. The PPDB is therefore more comprehensive than the EU endpoint lists. In principle, one value is selected for each endpoint in the database, which the database managers consider the most appropriate (generally the EU agreed endpoint, or alternatively a conservative value selected from a range of values).

All data held in the PPDB are ‘tagged’ with a code that allows the source of the data to be identified. The tag also includes a quality score, ranging from 1 (low) to 5 (high), which reflects the faith that the database managers have in the quality of the data. The database is actively updated as additional information is identified and new or better data become available.

The Pesticide Properties Database can be accessed at:

  1. Click on the language you wish to use
  2. Find/select the active ingredient or metabolite
  3. The relevant data file opens for consultation

Note: the selection process, sources and quality of the data are further explained under the heading “Support information”, in the section “Background and support information”.


Bio-pesticides Database

The Bio-pesticides Database has been developed and is maintained by the Agriculture & Environment Research Unit (AERU) at the University of Hertfordshire (UK), like the PPDB.

It covers crop protection products that have been derived from natural sources, such as naturally occurring chemicals, pheromones, bacteria, fungi and insect predators.

The structure and navigation of the BPDB are similar to the PPDB.


Veterinary Substances Database

The Veterinary Substances Database has been developed and is maintained by the Agriculture & Environment Research Unit (AERU) at the University of Hertfordshire (UK), like the PPDB.

It covers veterinary medicines (for internal use) as well as veterinary pesticides (for use against ectoparasites)

The structure and navigation of the VSDB are similar to the PPDB.


European Union endpoint lists

In the evaluation of active ingredients conducted by the European Union, a so-called endpoint list” is established. This is the reviewed and agreed list of outcomes of tests and studies, which forms the basis for further risk assessment of the pesticide. The EU endpoint lists are shown in Annexes I and II of the Review Report of each approved active ingredient.

  1. Click on “Active substances”
  2. Find a specific active ingredient by entering it in the filter box, or scroll down the active substance list.
  3. Click on the relevant active substance that appears below the box
  4. Scroll down on the page to find the Review report (also referred to as Inclusion report or Renewal report)

The agreed pesticide properties are in annex I and II of the report:

  • Identity, physical and chemical properties – Annex 1
  • Endpoints (of tests and studies) – Annex 2


EFSA OpenFoodTox database

OpenFoodTox is a database created by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) which provides open source toxicological and ecotoxicological endpoints, that have been evaluated through EFSA scientific reviews. In addition, the database lists reference values for hazard characterization (e.g. ADI, AOEL), and links to EFSA scientific opinions.

The home page of OpenFoodTox provides the link to the database.

After entering the database, the substance browser on the left allows you to search for a pesticide active ingredient, and sometimes metabolite or formulation.

The output page provides information on:

  • Substance characterization (e.g. CAS number)
  • EFSA Outputs (e.g. scientific reviews and legal decisions)
  • Hazard Characterization : Reference Points (toxicological and ecotoxicological endpoints)
  • Hazard Characterization : Reference Values (ADI, ARfD, AOEL)
  • Genotoxicity

To be able to read and navigate the data more easily (the output page is rather full), go with your cursor on the section that you want to read, and then click on the small arrows  in the right top corner of the section. 

This will show the section as full page. To go back to the main output page, click again on the arrows in the top right corner. 

Data can also be exported in pdf, csv or excel format. 

A background article about OpenFoodSource 


US-EPA ECOTOX knowledgebase

The US-EPA ECOTOXicology Knowledgebase (ECOTOX) is a comprehensive, publicly available database providing single chemical environmental toxicity data on aquatic life, terrestrial plants and wildlife. ECOTOX contains a very large number of ecotoxicity data for many chemicals and species, predominately from the peer-reviewed literature. However, some restrictions are placed on the information which is entered into ECOTOX, and data not satisfying these requirements are excluded from the database (click on “Limitations” on the home page, and scroll down to Data Limitations).

The database provides the results of all studies for a given organisms and endpoint, and does not only show the most appropriate (or conservative) value.

The US-EPA ECOTOX Knowledgebase can be accessed at:

Click on "Search" in the top menu or on the home page to start a query.

Searches can be filtered by pesticide active ingredient name, type of toxic effect, study endpoint, species name or group, test conditions and type of publication. Click "Update Search", every time you add/change a filter. Outputs are shown on separate pages for aquatic and terrestrial organisms; click the buttons at the top of the output page to toggle between the two.

Download and review the Quick User Guide and/or the User Guide, on the home page, for more advice on how best to establish a targeted data search in ECOTOX


PubChem database

PubChem provides information on the biological activities of small molecules. It includes substance information, compound structures, and BioActivity data in three primary databases, Pcsubstance, Pccompound, and PCBioAssay, respectively.
The Substance/Compound database, where possible, provides links to BioAssay description, literature, references, and assay data points. The BioAssay database also includes links back to the Substance/Compound database. 

PubChem provides an elaborate help page about the contents, sources and usages of the databases. The difference between substances and compounds in PubChem is explained on its blog.

The main PubChem page can be accessed at


eChemPortal is a global portal to information on chemical substances, managed by the OECD.

eChemPortal allows simultaneous searching of reports and datasets by chemical name and number and by chemical property. Direct links to collections of chemical hazard and risk information prepared for government chemical review programmes at national, regional and international levels are obtained.

Classification results according to national/regional hazard classification schemes or to the Globally Harmonized System of Classification and Labelling of Chemicals (GHS) are provided when available.

In addition, eChemPortal provides also exposure and use information on chemicals.

eChemPortal can be accessed at:

Use instruction are provided on its homepage.