REYNOLDSBURG — A strong coalition consisting of the Ohio Department
of Agriculture (ODA), The Ohio State University and several state
agricultural organizations* are encouraging farmers to attend training
courses for the Agricultural Fertilizer Applicator Certification
Signed into law by Governor John R. Kasich in May 2014,
Ohio Senate Bill 150 created a first of its kind certification program
for applying commercial fertilizer in Ohio. Focusing on science-based
practices, the bill requires farmers applying commercial fertilizer to
more than 50 acres to attend a course on fertilizer application.
Applicators must be certified no later than September 30, 2017.
farmers look for training opportunities we would encourage them to
become certified through our program as soon as possible,” said ODA
Director David T. Daniels. “While they can’t plant in the winter, they
can learn about the numerous practices that will save them money while
improving water quality. Nearly every farmer who takes the training says
they learned something, so I ask producers what are they waiting for?”
Extension will hold numerous training sessions across all regions of
the state this winter. The training sessions focus on best management
practices and the latest research to keep nutrients in the field and
available to crops while reducing nutrients leaving the field. To date
nearly 12,000 farmers have become certified through the program.
are looking forward to seeing Ohio farmers at our nutrient application
trainings this year,” said Roger Rennekamp, director of Ohio State
University Extension. “There are hundreds of workshops scheduled, and
we’ll be sharing the latest research-based information on how to get the
most out of fertilizer applications. Farmers want to prevent nutrient
run-off as much as anyone, for economic and environmental reasons.”
applicators have until Sept. 30 to become certified, the majority of
training sessions for certification will occur in the winter. ODA will
strive to gain voluntary compliance but applying commercial fertilizer
after Sept. 30 without a certification could result in fines and/or
being charged with a misdemeanor offense.
“Between the law and
voluntary efforts, farmers have proven they’re willing to help address
Ohio’s water quality challenges,” said Adam Sharp, executive vice
president of Ohio Farm Bureau Federation. “Becoming certified by the
deadline is a crucial part of meeting our responsibilities.
more information on certification training, farmers can visit
www.nutrienteducation.osu.edu. Once there, farmers can learn more about
the training and even sign up for classes in their area.