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Who needs a certified pesticide applicator certificate?

In Virginia, occupational use of pesticides requires certification in most instances. To use or supervise the use of Restricted-Use Pesticides (RUPs), certification is always required. For use of General-Use Pesticides (GUPs), certification requirements depend on the nature of the use, the application site, and the employer.

In Virginia, certification (of some type) is required for:
* Growers who use or supervise the use of restricted-use pesticides.
* Farm employees who handle restricted-use pesticides without the direct supervision of a certified applicator.
* All government employees who apply any pesticide(s) on the job.
* All applicators who apply any pesticide(s) for a fee (for hire).
* Many applicators who use any pesticides on the job on their employer's property (not for hire), in areas considered to be especially sensitive. (Agricultural producers and their employees do not fall into this group.)
*Pest management (or crop) consultants who make specific pesticide recommendations for a fee.

Note: The use of general-use sanitizers, disinfectants, and germicides does not require certification in Virginia. However, these products are legally considered to be pesticides, and must be used according to the directions on their labels.

For more information see the document Pesticide Applicator Overview, and/or visit the VDACS Office of Pesticide Services website.

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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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