Extension to offer pesticide applicator training for area farmers
Specialist: Private application training had huge impact on safety
The University of Missouri Extension will be hosting two pesticide applicator trainings for Barry County producers on March 13.
The first will take place at 1 p.m. at the Barry County Courthouse Commission Room in Cassville, and another training option will be held at 5:30 p.m. at the Cassville High School Vo-Ag department. A light meal will be provided at the second training.
Pre-registration is required, along with a $15 fee to attend.
The charge will cover the cost of materials. For those who already own the Missouri Private Pesticide Applicator Reference Manual (M87 – Printed 2007 with blue lettering on the front), there will be a reduction in the cost by $12.
Extension Regional Agronomy Specialist Tim Schnakenberg will be co-teaching the class, which he says helps educate local farmers on how to safely and effectively use and apply pesticide.
"It's a training to get farmers certified to use restricted-use pesticides on their own properties," Schnakenberg said. "Every five years, they have to go through the training according to the EPA and Missouri Department of Agriculture, so the Extension provides this training.
"In the training, we go through safety and environmental concerns and how to apply it, how to calibrate a sprayer, how to read the labels and things like that. It takes about two-and-one-half hours to get throughout the material but I do give a lot of opportunities for interaction and discussion."
Schnakenberg said participants typically have a new perspective after attending the training.
"People come through training and say, 'That changed my thinking about pesticides,'" he said. "I think it's good, practical information for them. We talk about safety and applying the right amount for what they're trying to get control of, and not over applying or under applying. I really believe private application training, [more for farmers who are using pesticides on their own properties and farming operations], has made a huge impact on how safely pesticides have been applied over the years because I think people have been educated when they come to these classes.
"There are two kinds of pesticides farmers can buy. One is Round Up, there are no major restrictions on those. But there are others that have more environmental or health concerns and those are called restricted-use pesticides. To buy those, you have to get a license and the dealers that sell them have to make sure the license is up-to-date when they buy them."
Producers who purchase these types of pesticides are required to attend a training on safely and properly applying the pesticides, either through attending a training event, or by making an appointment at the extension office to view a video.
Either option is available, but Schnakenberg said the training events offer more of a benefit.
"I do encourage people to come to these classes, because there's more of a learning environment," he said.
People must pre-register by calling 417-847-3161. If weather is an issue, people may call that number or 417-838-8405 to confirm if the program will proceed. The training provides certification to obtain a Missouri Private Pesticide Applicators License for agricultural producers and will also count for recertification requirements by the state. The training will not certify for commercial application licenses. Attendees must be 18 years or older. The training will last 2-1/2 to 3 hours.