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Home > Licensing, Inspections, Certifications & Testing > Licensing > Fertilizer Licensing > Fertilizer Licensing FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions About Fertilizer Licensing


I only apply fertilizers for hire. Do I need a fertilizer license?

YES. A person who applies fertilizer for hire (regardless of whether the fertilizer product is custom blended, bagged, bulk, etc.) must obtain a fertilizer license from the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA). A license is required for any application, including applications to lawns, plants (including trees and shrubs), and interior landscapes.

I only apply fertilizers (lawn/ornamental) for hire. What do I give to the customer?

An application record is given to the customer stating the following information: 1) The net weight, which may be listed as the total net weight applied or the net weight applied per unit treated; 2) the guaranteed analysis; 3) your name and address; 4) the number of units treated in square feet, acres, or another unit of measure; and 5) a derivative statement.

I only sell and/or apply ag fertilizers in bulk. What do I give to the purchaser?

An invoice/batch ticket/delivery ticket is given to the purchaser stating the following information: 1) The net weight and guaranteed analysis of each of the materials used or of the final mixture and your name and address; or 2) The net weight and guaranteed analysis of the final mixture and your name and address.

I have more than one fixed location in minnesota where I do business. Do I need a separate license for each location?

YES. A separate license is required for each fixed location where a person does business within the state. A fixed location means all stationary fertilizer operations located in the same plant location or locality (city).

I have multiple fixed locations outside the state of Minnesota. Do I need a separate license for each location?

NO. Only one license is required for all fixed locations that are located outside of the state.

We are closed the last two weeks of the year for Christmas. Is it possible to waive the late fee on renewal applications?

NO. Minnesota Statute, Chapter 18C.425, Subdivision 4 states: If an application for renewal of a fertilizer license is not filed before January 1 of the year, as required, an additional application fee of one-half of the amount due must be paid before the renewal registration may be issued. The envelope containing your renewal application must be postmarked by December 31.

I manufacture micronutrients products. Do I need to submit labels?

YES. Labels must be submitted for all micronutrient products.

Does Minnesota have a law that regulates metals in fertilizers?

YES.  Minnesota Statutes, Section 18C.401 Subd. 5. states "The commissioner may not license or register for sale or use in Minnesota any fertilizer containing more than 500 parts per million by weight of arsenic."

Do I need to submit a report of arsenic analysis with each fertilizer registration or license application? 

Reports of arsenic analysis are no longer required to be submitted at the time of product registration or licensing.  Instead a company representative will certify that all fertilizers submitted for registration or requiring a license comply with Minnesota Statutes, Section 18C.401 Subd. 5. when signing and submitting an application for registration or license.  However, reports of arsenic analysis should be on file and available if requested by the MDA.

How is compliance with Minnesota's metals standard monitored?  

The MDA may choose to conduct random audits by requesting reports of arsenic analysis from registrants and license holders.  The MDA may also require reports of arsenic analysis prior to the approval of products that contain micronutrients, waste or ash derived fertilizer or filler materials.

What is the definition of an ash derived fertilizer or filler material?

Definition: Ash is a waste product of the incineration of materials including but not limited to municipal solid waste, biosolids, animal manure, coal, wood or other plant materials or a combination of these materials.

What is the definition of a waste derived fertilizer or filler material?

Definition: Waste-derived fertilizer is a commercial fertilizer that is derived from an industrial byproduct or other material that would otherwise be disposed of. This may include solid or hazardous wastes, but does not include regulated biosolids or wastewater.

I have a report of analysis for my fertilizer products that includes a list of other heavy metals.  Can I submit copies of these reports when a report of arsenic analysis is requested? 

YES.  However, the laboratory sample preparation and analysis procedures must be completed using the methods listed below.

Analysis Method

Method Number

Inductively Coupled Plasma (ICP)

6010, 6010A, 6010B

Atomic Absorption (AA)

7060A (Furnace Technique) or 7061A (Gaseous Hydride)*

Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectroscopy (ICP/MS)

6020

Use sample preparation method 3050B or 3051A. *A specific sample preparation method is detailed within the analytical procedure description for this method of analysis.

When requested to submit a report of arsenic analysis can I submit an analytical report for each raw material used to manufacture my fertilizer products? 

NO. An analytical report must be submitted for each fertilizer offered for sale requiring a license or registration?

My product labels and MSDS have not changed. Do I need to include them with my renewal application?

NO. Labels and MSDS for renewal products need only be submitted if label modifications have been made since the last submission, products are listed as conditional, or if new products are included on the renewal or a new application.

What does the statement "Offers for sale private label micronutrients" mean?

Private label micronutrient products are micronutrient fertilizers that are manufactured by one company and offered for sale under the brand name of another company. The company that manufactures the fertilizer typically does not take responsibility for licensing, registration or labeling the fertilizer.

I noticed on my renewal application that the business, operations and facilities information listed is incorrect or incomplete. How do I go about correcting this information and what are the business, operations and facility options?

You may correct the information by crossing out the incorrect/obsolete information and listing any additional information on the form in the open space under the licensed locations column.

Type of Business:

Type of Operation:

Type of Facility:

Agricultural

Lawn Service/Ornamental

Manufacturer

Wholesaler/Distributor

Mobile Blending Unit

Retailer

Ground Application

Aerial Application

Ornamental Application

Anhydrous Ammonia

Dry

Ammoniation-Granulation

Liquid

Mfg Liquid Base Materials

Mfg or offers for sale private label micronutrient products

What is a mobile blending unit?

A mobile mechanical (blending) unit is a portable machine or apparatus used to manufacture fertilizers. A 10-34-0 ammonium polyphosphate converter is an example of a mobile blending unit.

MDA Contact

Carol Durden, State Program Administrator
Carol.Durden@state.mn.us
651-201-6379
Pesticide & Fertilizer Management Division