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Pesticide Education Program

Since I became a youth development educator, I no longer teach pesticide trainings, however I wanted to share information with producers from a column recently written by my colleague, Jenny Rees. Training options for 2022 include: in-person training via your local county Extension office (Fee $50), online training via pested.unl.edu (Fee $50), or attending Crop Production Clinics cpc.unl.edu (Fee $80). RSVP will be required for all in-person training to the county Extension office hosting the training.

One change to the training: a hard copy of the “Guide for Weed, Insect, Disease Management” will not be provided with your training materials this year and is not included in the fee cost. A weblink to view the Guide will be provided to certifying applicators. A hard copy of the Guide can also be purchased, and information will be shared when pesticide letters to applicators needed to recertify in 2022.

Due to changes in the Nebraska Pesticide Act, there are additional updates to the private pesticide safety training that may impact your operation, particularly regarding fumigation. By 2025, everyone who fumigates, needs to have a fumigation category associated with one’s pesticide license. This includes for private applicators. The fumigation category can only be obtained by purchasing the training materials from pested.unl.edu and then taking a test at an NDA walk-in testing location.

In 2022, pesticide cards (tan in color) will be printed to be thicker like a credit card since the ink would often rub off on the previous paper versions. Private applicators previously did not have categories assigned on their licenses but will in the future if they fumigate. This change will begin in phases beginning with licenses that expire in 2022. Licenses that expire in 2023 and 2024 will need to obtain fumigation certification during their pesticide renewal years.

Your new license will indicate that you received private pesticide safety training with the words “General Agriculture” and/or a code (00) printed on it. If you choose to get certified in either Soil or Non-Soil/Structural Fumigation, your license will show these as 01a and 11, respectively.

Activities that require the Soil Fumigation (01A) category include: The use of restricted use fumigants to control soil-borne insects or disease such as in potato fields or fumigation prior to planting tree nursery stock. If you wish to use soil fumigants, you will be required to pass the commercial/noncommercial Soil Fumigation (category 01a) exam to receive this certification. Training manuals are available for purchase on the pested.unl.edu website or call 402-472-1632 for more information.

Activities that require the Non-Soil/Structural Fumigation (11) category include: The use of solid or gaseous restricted use fumigants in burrows, buildings, chambers, vaults, tents, vehicles, railcars, or other vessels. The application can be for protection of commodities from insects, vertebrate animals, or pathogens that cause disease. For example, fumigation of stored grain (flat or silo storage), fumigation of rodent burrows (moles, gophers, etc. because fumigating burrow, not soil), fumigation of logs or other wood materials (under tarps or in chambers), fumigation of structures for termites or other wood destroying insects. If you wish to use non-soil, structural, or rodent burrow fumigants, you will be required to pass the commercial/noncommercial Non-Soil/Structural Fumigation (category 11) exam to receive this certification. Training manuals are available for purchase on the pested.unl.edu website or call 402-472-1632 for more information.

Activities that require a pesticide license but do NOT require fumigation categories include: the use of restricted use pesticide mists, smokes, fogs or other aerosols that are NOT labeled as fumigants. Examples of these are ‘gopher gasers’ and other products that aren’t labeled as fumigants. They typically have a smell to them whereas fumigants don’t.

This is all new for 2022 and will most likely be confusing. Please contact the Nebraska Department of Agriculture at 402-471-2351 with any questions if the fumigation activities you are doing involve a fumigation license.

REMINDER: Cow-Calf College on January 25th

Cow-Calf College is gearing up to be hosted January 25th at the Clay County Fairgrounds from 9:30 am to 3:00 pm in the Activities Building. Registration starts at 9:00 a.m. This year’s program will be offered in a hybrid format through zoom & attendance in person. A lunch will be provided to those who register, and the program will conclude with a coffee shop panel where participants can ask questions directly to specialists as well as the opportunity to win a variety of door prizes.   

Pre-registration a week in advance is highly encouraged to allow for proper planning. Pre-registration can be made by calling the Fillmore County Extension Office at 402-759-3712 or Clay County Extension Office at 402-762-3644 or online at go.unl.edu/frcollege. To participate via zoom, register at go.unl.edu/onlinecowcalfcollege.

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