Pesticide applicators can earn recertification credits to renew their pesticide licenses during any of a series of conferences offered by Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences and the Ohio Department of Agriculture beginning in January 2015.

The 2015 Ohio Commercial Pesticide Applicator Recertification conferences are designed to help applicators fulfill Ohio’s commercial applicator requirement of five hours of training in a single day, said Mary Ann Rose, program director for Ohio State University Extension’s Ohio Pesticide Safety Education Program.

Recertification credits are available in all of Ohio’s commercial applicator categories, she said.

The conferences will for the first time offer Agricultural Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training to commercial applicators during three of the four conferences, Rose said.

“The Ohio Pesticide Safety Education Program provides training, education and outreach to pesticide applicators about the safe, effective and legal use of pesticides,” she said. “The program works with farmers, businesses and public agencies to protect human health and the environment and serves as a critical part of job training and business growth in Ohio.

“Applicators will receive the most up-to-date, research-based information from Ohio State specialists while meeting the requirements to maintain their pesticide license.”

The conference dates are:

 

  • Jan. 22 at the Kalahari Conference Center, 7000 Kalahari Drive in Sandusky.
  • Jan. 29 at the Dayton Convention Center, 22 E. 5th St. in Dayton.
  • Feb. 18 at the John S. Knight Center, 77 E. Mill St. in Akron.
  • March 11 at the Greater Columbus Convention Center, 400 N. High St. in Columbus.

 

Last year, about 3,300 people attended the training, Rose said.

The conferences will cover a variety of topics, including turfgrass management, structural pest control, ornamental care, industrial vegetation control, pest control strategies and agricultural pest management, she said.

“Licensed pesticide applicators need the recertification training to learn about new alternatives and methods, products to control pests, and to stay current with pesticide regulations,” Rose said. “The program focuses on responsible use of pesticides while promoting the health of the public and the environment.”

To become licensed, a pesticide applicator must pass exams that test their competency in pesticide application. To renew a license, applicators must be recertified through continuing education or retest, Rose said.

“Most applicators choose the continuing education option,” she said.

The fertilizer certification training, required by Ohio’s new agricultural nutrients law, will be offered at the Sandusky, Dayton and Columbus conferences, said Rose.

The law requires certification of those who apply fertilizer to more than 50 acres of an agricultural commodity. The law, however, does not require certification to apply manure or if the crops are grown primarily to be used on-farm for feed, she said.

“At our conferences, primarily the commercial agriculture applicators will need this training, but those who grow more than 50 acres of any crop for sale - ornamentals, sod, fruit, vegetables or any other commodity - will also need certification,” Rose said.

According to the new law, the deadline for growers and chemical nutrient applicators to complete the fertilizer certification process is Sept. 30, 2017. The certification is valid for three years, at which point the applicator will require recertification.

More information on the conferences, including how to register, is available on the Pesticide Safety Education Program’s website at pested.osu.edu or by calling the program office at 614-292-4070.