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You are here: Home FAQ Applicator Certification Do I need a certificate to spray Round-Up if it's part of my job?

Do I need a certificate to spray Round-Up if it's part of my job?

Many applicators ask about whether they need to be certified to apply weed killers and other pesticides that normally might be applied by the average homeowner.

It depends!

No, if you are a grower, producing an agricultural commodity on property you own or lease (or on the property of another grower if you apply pesticides in exchange for goods or services with the other producer.) Growers only need to be certified if they use restricted-use pesticides. Round-Up is not classified as restricted-use.

However, if you are NOT engaged in agricultural production or hired as a farmworker by a grower, the answer is quite different:

Yes, if you apply pesticides for hire or as part of your job duties as a government employee. In Virginia, For-Hire and Government Employee applicators must be certified to use ANY pesticide for ANY purpose on the job.

Maybe, if you do not apply pesticides for-hire but do use them as part of your job. Not-for-hire applicators -- for example, maintenance workers, golf course managers -- must be certified to use restricted-use pesticides, and ANY pesticide (including RoundUP) in these areas:
- any area open to the general public at the following establishments: educational institutions, health care facilities, day-care facilities, convalescent facilities;
- where open food is stored, processed or sold; or
- any recreational land over five acres.

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Fertilizer Certification

Online Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training


Virginia Cooperative Extension offers a free online training and testing program (Fertilizer Applicator Certification Training, FACT)

Upon successful completion of this online training program, users meet the requirements of becoming a Virginia Certified Fertilizer Applicator as administered through the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS). The link to the FACT website is and complete instructions on how to access the system, enroll in the training, complete the training and testing, and contact information for any questions are provided.

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