vineland chemical co., inc.


The Vineland Chemical Company manufactured arsenic-based herbicides from 1950 to 1994 on this 54-acre site in a residential and industrial area of the City of Vineland. The plant site included a number of manufacturing and storage buildings, a laboratory, several lagoons, and former chicken coops. The majority of the site is covered with vegetation, with the exception of the parking lots and a paved manufacturing area. A security fence surrounded the main part of the plant, including the former manufacturing buildings and lagoon area. Prior to 1977, the company stored by-product arsenic salts in open piles and in the chicken coops. As a result of water contacting the exposed piles, arsenic contaminated an adjacent wetland (Blackwater Branch), surface and subsurface soils, groundwater, and the nearby Maurice River and downstream Union Lake. The lower Maurice River system extends 26 miles from the lake to the Delaware Bay. By 1982, the Vineland Chemical Company, in response to State actions, instituted some cleanup actions and modified the production process. These modifications included: installing a non-contact cooling water system, lining two of the lagoons, installing a storm water runoff collection system, and disposing of piles of waste salts. Also, in 1982, the company, under a State Administrative Order, began operating a wastewater treatment system to remove arsenic. The treatment system received contaminated process water and groundwater from two lined surface impoundments and discharged treated water to percolation lagoons. However, the treatment system was able to process only 35,000 gallons of contaminated water per day, while an estimated 150,000 gallons left the site daily. Further, the system had been unable to reduce arsenic concentrations to acceptable levels. In February 1994, a consent decree was entered into court to settle the liability of the owner and the only responsible party, Miriam Schwerdtle. Site Responsibility: This site is being addressed through Federal and State actions.

Hazardous Ranking Score

59 / 100

A score of 28.5 or higher qualifies a site for the Superfund National Priority List.

Regional Contact

Region 2
Phone: (877) 251-4575

Contact Region



Site Inspection
Preliminary Assessment
Final Listing On NPL

Contaminants & Health Effects

      Endocrine Disrupter
      Reproductive Toxin
      Persistent, bioaccumulative and toxic


        African American
        American Indian and Alaska Native
        Native Hawaiian


        People living
        within a 1 mile radius


        Average Income


        Occupied homes

        Potentially Responsible Parties

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