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Pre-Registration Required for 2016 Private Applicator Pesticide Certification Trainings

By Staff | Jan 15, 2016

I’d like to remind private pesticide applicators that this year’s Pierce County private applicator pesticide certification trainings will again require pre-registration for the session an expiring applicator plans to attend. The Pierce County Extension office began to implement the pre-registration system last year which helps trainings run more smoothly in addition to ensuring adequate space and materials for attendees. Expiring applicators will be mailed a notice of their expiring certificates and a list of local training dates during the week of Jan. 18. Expiring applicators will need to choose the training they will attend and submit that to the Pierce County Extension office. This year there will be no walk-ins unless there has been a cancellation. New applicators should call the Extension office to let us know which training they would like to attend. The testing period for all new applicators will be March 17, 2016 at 9:00 a.m. at the Pierce County Courthouse.

The certification fee is $30. Checks are payable to the NDSU Extension Service. Currently, certifications are good for 3 years and expire on April 1of the third year.

Pierce County private applicator certification meetings will be held in Rugby to recertify or certify on the following dates:

Tuesday, Feb. 2, 2016 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Dakota Farms check-in @ 12:30 p.m.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at Rugby Eagles check-in @ 12:30 p.m.

For those re-certifying, who are unable to attend one of these meetings, there is the option of attending a meeting in another county. A list of known training dates and locations in other counties will be included in the notification letters sent out to expiring applicators next week. As always applicators continue to have the option of taking an open book test in lieu of attending a training meeting. The certification fee is still $30.

For questions, to pre-register, to find out about trainings in other counties, or to schedule a time to take the test please call the Pierce County Extension office at 776-6234 ext. 5 or email yolanda.schmidt@ndsu.edu.

Veterinary Feed Directive

The use of medications in feed has been an effective and convenient method to prevent and treat certain disease conditions in groups of livestock. As most livestock producers are aware, in the coming year the Food and Drug Administration will begin implementing a veterinary feed directive (VFD) order which pertains to the use of medications used in feeds. The VFD will prohibit the use of medications considered medically important in human medicine from being used in livestock feed for the purpose of enhancing growth, increasing feed efficiency, or any other off label use (off label use is using a drug to treat a condition not listed on the product label or in a manner not listed on the label such as not following administration route and/or dosage).

Proper use of feed medications will need to be done under the oversight of a veterinarian. This means that by January 1, 2017 animal producers will need to work with a veterinarian if they wish to use feeds containing antibiotics that are considered to be medically important for use in humans.

The classification of medically important antibiotics is due to the idea among consumers that there is a link between the use of antibiotics in livestock and those used in human medicine.

According to Dr. Stokka, NDSU Extension Service veterinarian and livestock stewardship specialist, only three of the antibiotics that will be controlled are used by North Dakota ranchers with any regularity. These are: the tetracycline class, the tylosin class, and sulfas.

Dr. Stokka also predicts that while the rule change will prohibit feed grade antibiotics from being used to promote growth or feed efficiency, it won’t create undue hardship for North Dakota producers because those uses aren’t common here. Ionophores such as Bovatec and Rumensin which are feed additives used by North Dakota producers to increase feed efficiency have no use in human medicine and will not require VFD’s unless they are fed with controlled antibiotics.

The vast majority of livestock producers already do a very good job using these products as labeled and follow appropriate slaughter withdrawal times to prevent tissue residues. VFD’s will provide more accountability for the industry.

One thing that might catch some individuals off guard is that they will no longer be able to buy milk replacer containing antibiotics without a VFD.

While a producer must have a working relationship with a veterinarian in order to obtain a VFD, Dr. Stokka doesn’t expect this new system to be a hardship for producers or their veterinarians. An example scenario might be a rancher with a pen of newly weaned calves that starts to show signs of respiratory disease. Under the new system, the rancher will call his/her veterinarian about the problem and the veterinarian will issue a VFD which will likely be transmitted electronically to the producer and the feed store and all 3 parties will keep copies.

A key piece of preparing for the VFD is that in order for a veterinarian to write the VFD, he/she must have a working relationship with the producer, be aware of the producer’s operation, management, and capabilities. A producer can have such a relationship with more than one veterinarian but would not be able to just show up at any random veterinarian’s office and ask for a VFD.

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