The MDA oversees the sale, use, distribution, transfer, labeling and storage of specialty fertilizers. Our objective is to promote fair trade practices among businesses that sell specialty fertilizer products and to ensure labels are accurate and understandable. 

A specialty fertilizer is a fertilizer labeled and distributed for, but not limited to, the following uses: greenhouses, nurseries, home gardens, house plants, lawn fertilizer that is not custom applied, shrubs, golf courses, municipal parks, and cemeteries.  

It is illegal to sell brands or grades of specialty fertilizers in Minnesota unless the fertilizer is registered with the MDA. Generally, specialty fertilizers that are custom applied and/or custom blended are exempt from the registration requirement under certain circumstances. Registration of a fertilizer is not a warranty by the state. (Minn. Stat. 18C.411)

The application for registration must include:

  • a completed registration application form;
  • a copy of the specialty fertilizer product label(s); and
  • the appropriate application fees. (Minn. Stat. 18C.425)

Application Fee

  • The annual application fee for registration of a specialty fertilizer is $100 for each brand and grade to be sold or distributed.
  • Application fees are nonrefundable. Therefore, we recommend that copies of labels or proposed labels be submitted to us for review and comment prior to submission of a registration application. This may prevent the loss of fees in case a product registration is denied

Registration Period

  • The registration period is effective until January 1 following the date of issuance or approval. The application for renewal of a registration of a product must be filed with us on or before December 31 the previous year or an additional application (penalty) fee of one-half of the application fee ($50) is due.
  • A product registration is not transferable from one person to another or from the ownership to whom the registration is issued to another ownership

Registration Discontinuation

Specialty fertilizers are given two years to clear the channel of trade. Use one of the following two options to discontinue the registration of specialty fertilizers:

  • Complete the two-year discontinuation process by registering a specialty fertilizer for two years after distribution or sale has ceased.
  • Provide documentation showing that no specialty fertilizer product has been distributed or sold into or within the state for the last two years.