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Spraying dicamba in an adjoining state may require more training.

Mindy Ward, Editor, Missouri Ruralist

January 23, 2018

3 Min Read
DICAMBA DISORGANIZED: Confused by the recent rules surrounding dicamba training? You’re not alone. Those providing the training and state agriculture departments are also. What they are finding is that mandated training does not transfer among states.Dimedrol68/iStock/Thinkstock

Certification to spray new formulas of dicamba in one state may not transfer to another.

“Whether you are spraying or buying any of the three registered dicamba products in the state of Missouri, you have to go through our training,” says Paul Bailey, Missouri Department of Agriculture Plant Industries division director. “No other training or certification is accepted.”

It is a year to know rules for applying dicamba. The federal registrations for applying the restricted-use pesticides — XtendiMax herbicide with VaporGrip Technology, FeXapan herbicide plus VaporGrip, and Engenia herbicide — all require dicamba or auxin-specific training prior to application. But not all training is treated equal.

Will your training transfer?

The federal label states training can be done through university or industry. However, certain states — Alabama, Georgia, Indiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Tennessee and Missouri — all require their own state-approved training. Other states are using training provided by product companies — Monsanto, BASF and DuPont.

The problem for farmers, custom applicators or cooperatives is knowing what type of training will reciprocate across state borders.

Missouri requires that prior to purchasing or using these three products, certified private and certified commercial applicators must complete mandatory dicamba training provided by the University of Missouri Extension. But can a Missouri applicator use the state-specific dicamba training and apply to farm ground in other states?

If he or she has ground in Iowa, the answer is no. The problem? Missouri allows online training. The Iowa Department of Agriculture spokesperson said the state was “stiffer than that,” and anyone applying dicamba must attend in-person training. Currently, there are more than 60 training sessions available in the state.

However, the question in some cases even confuses state departments of agriculture. In calling the Illinois Department of Agriculture, the representative said they were new to dicamba training and were uncertain if other state-specific training would apply. Illinois requires company training through Monsanto, BASF or DuPont. The dicamba training telephone help line had to find its own help with the question.

The answer is yes, Illinois will accept other states’ dicamba training. Individuals do not need to go through additional company training. They are not required to file any documentation with the state, just keep a record of the training with them.

Keep the certificate handy
However, in Missouri, individuals purchasing or applying dicamba formulations must have a piece of paper that says they completed the MU Extension training. “The certificate is what you want,” said MU weed scientist Kevin Bradley during a recent meeting of certified crop advisers. “You need to make sure you get one of those in your hand.”

Missouri requires that training verification must be presented to the retail establishment, pesticide dealer or distributor upon taking possession of Engenia, XtendiMax and FeXapan.

However, for those wishing to spray in Indiana, no certificate or special pesticide license designation will be issued.

The Office of Indiana State Chemist provides its own dicamba training. Training instructors and Office of the Indiana State Chemist will maintain a roster of those attending the required training, and collect the applicators’ names, addresses and license numbers. It is up to attendees to keep a record with the training date, location and who provided the training they attended as part of the mandatory label-required recordkeeping for use of these products.

Bottom line
If spraying across state lines, don’t assume your training or certification will meet requirements: Call first. It is up to individual states as to how they handle training for purchase and use of dicamba in 2018.

Know the type of documentation you need in your possession before you buy or spray dicamba formulations. Your best bet is to make copies of certificates and training dates, and keep them with you during this year’s growing season.

About the Author(s)

Mindy Ward

Editor, Missouri Ruralist

Mindy resides on a small farm just outside of Holstein, Mo, about 80 miles southwest of St. Louis.

After graduating from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural journalism, she worked briefly at a public relations firm in Kansas City. Her husband’s career led the couple north to Minnesota.

There, she reported on large-scale production of corn, soybeans, sugar beets, and dairy, as well as, biofuels for The Land. After 10 years, the couple returned to Missouri and she began covering agriculture in the Show-Me State.

“In all my 15 years of writing about agriculture, I have found some of the most progressive thinkers are farmers,” she says. “They are constantly searching for ways to do more with less, improve their land and leave their legacy to the next generation.”

Mindy and her husband, Stacy, together with their daughters, Elisa and Cassidy, operate Showtime Farms in southern Warren County. The family spends a great deal of time caring for and showing Dorset, Oxford and crossbred sheep.

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