The Fertilizer Institute, Agricultural Retailers Association and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration formalized an alliance to build upon the stewardship efforts associated with the ResponsibleAg program, which is a voluntary initiative created to enhance the health, safety and security performance at agricultural retail facilties.
“Through this alliance we will provide partner members and the public with information, guidance and access to training resources to help them protect the health, safety and security of workers, emergency responders and the communities surrounding agricultural retail and supply facilities, with a particular focus on the safe storage and handling of fertilizers,” said The Fertilizer Institute President and CEO Chris Jahn.
“Safety is much larger than one person or one company,” said Agricultural Retailers Association President & CEO Daren Coppock. “Safety also means being a good steward – a good steward of the land, business, employees, and the communities in which we operate. This alliance is a positive step for ARA, TFI, and OSHA to work together on an issue that is top of mind for ag retailers.”
The alliance unveiled its first project: a training video showing a mock agricultural retail facility inspection. The video was filmed at the ResponsibleAg training facility in Owensboro, Ky., and will educate facility operators and managers on complying with federal health and safety regulations.
Additional objectives of the alliance include:
- Further leveraging the success of the ResponsibleAg program;
- Sharing information on OSHA’s National Initiatives and opportunities to participate in initiatives and the rulemaking process;
- Sharing information on occupational safety and health laws and standards, including the rights and responsibilities of workers and employers;
- Speaking, exhibiting or appearing at OSHA, TFI and ARA conferences, local meetings or other events, including the OSHA Alliance Program Forum;
- Sharing information among OSHA personnel and industry safety and health professionals regarding TFI and ARA good practices or effective approaches through training programs, workshops, seminars and lectures; and,
- Encouraging TFI Local Sections and ARA members to build relationships with OSHA Regional and Area Offices to address health and safety issues, including the safe storage and handling of fertilizers.
The alliance will remain in effect for two years, with representatives from each organization meeting periodically to discuss the responsibilities of the participants, to share information on activities and to track results in achieving the goals of the alliance.