University of Minnesota Extension is hosting dozens of private pesticide applicator recertification workshops across the state, beginning Jan. 15 in St. Cloud and concluding Feb. 27 in Mankato.
To obtain recertification, farmers have three options:
- Attend one of 53 recertification workshops (only for applicators whose certification has not yet expired).
- Complete the exam as a home study course. Private pesticide applicator study manuals (19th Edition; $10) and mail-in exams are available at most county Extension offices.
- Complete the exam online. The online test, mail-in test and recertification workshops have the same fee of $75.
Recertification workshops last about three-and-a-half hours. No pre-registration is needed. However, participants are encouraged to arrive before the workshop start time. The Minnesota Department of Agriculture requires workshop participants to attend the entire workshop to receive credit for recertification.
Anyone who arrives more than 15 minutes late to the workshop will not receive recertification credit. If you cannot attend the entire workshop, you may attend another workshop or take the online or mail-in test.
MDA also requires all workshop participants to present a government-issued photo ID, such as a driver's license or passport. You will also need your private pesticide applicator certification card or number to assist with on-site registration. If you have misplaced your certification card, you may obtain your certification number by calling 651-201-6615.
Workshop presentations include information on pesticide laws and regulations; transportation, storage and emergencies; herbicide residuals and cover crops; laundering pesticide-contaminated clothing; and current crop-pest issues and integrated pest management.
If you are not yet certified or your certification has lapsed, you must take the online or mail-in-test.
According to MDA, Minnesota has more than 16,000 certified private applicators, or farmers, who use restricted-use pesticides to control insect and weed pests. Private pesticide applicators obtain certification through a program administered by MDA and U-M Extension.
The three-year certificate costs $75 and expires on March 1 of the third year following certification. Once certified, applicators may use restricted-use pesticides. State law also requires dealers to record all sales of restricted-use products to private pesticide applicators. Private applicators must obtain a fumigation endorsement in addition to their private pesticide applicator certification to apply fumigants.
Farmer should take note that these workshops are separate from the additional training required for certified applicators who wish to apply dicamba formulations onto dicamba-tolerant soybeans in 2020. Check the Minnesota Crop Production Retailers Association website for more information regarding these sessions. If you plan to apply paraquat, go online for more details on additional training.