Custom Manure Applicators

Introduction to the Custom Applicator Certification Program:

As part of Act 64 signed into law of June 2015, the Vermont Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets (VAAFM) was directed to require training and certification of custom manure applicators that operate within the State of Vermont.  The Custom Applicator Certification Program was formalized with the passing of the Required Agricultural Practices (RAPs) in December 2016, which include training and certification requirements for custom applicators that operate within the State of Vermont.

List of Vermont Certified Custom Applicators

Custom Applicator Definition:

A custom applicator is a person who is engaged in the business of applying manure or nutrients to land and who charges or collects other consideration for the service. All owner/operators or full-time custom applicators must be certified with VAAFM to operate within the state of Vermont. Seasonal, part time, or other employees of custom applicators must receive training on the Required Agricultural Practices (RAPs) and management practices to reduce risk of runoff when spreading manure.

The RAP Rule requires Custom Applicators:
  • Be certified by VAAFM, certification lasts for 5 years but must be renewed annually
  • Receive 8 hours of training each five-year period of certification
  • Demonstrate knowledge of RAPs and all other applicable agricultural rules
  • Train all their seasonal, part time, or other employees in methods or techniques to minimize runoff to surface water
  • Maintain records of the amount of manure or agricultural waste applied by farm and field

Certification:

To certify with AAFM, custom manure applicators must take a 2 hour training course on the Required Agricultural Practices and complete a certifying exam, either online or in person. In-person trainings and exams can be set up by emailing Mary.Montour@vermont.gov or calling (802) 461-6087.

In 2020 and 2021, new custom applicators are being allowed to certify online to reduce in-person contact. To certify online, 

  1. Complete the Online UVM Training Course and Certifying Exam, save the Certificate of Completion, and email it to Jenn LaValley at Jenn.LaValley@vermont.gov.

 ONLINE UVM TRAINING COURSE AND CERTIFYING EXAM

  1. Fill out the contact form 

CUSTOM APPLICATOR CONTACT FORM 

  1. Upon receipt of your Certificate of Completion and Contact form, VAAFM will send you an invoice requesting a $30 certification fee.

Certification lasts for 5 years but must be renewed annually with a $30 fee per certified custom applicator due January 31st of each year.  Certified Custom Applicators are required to have 8 hours of training in each 5-year period of certification. 

Training:

Custom applicators certified by VAAFM are required to receive 8 hours of training every five-year period of certification.  Seasonal, part time, and other types of employees are also required to receive training that address application methods to minimize runoff and identification of weather or soil conditions that increase risk of runoff.  

VAAFM has partnered with UVM Extension to provide educational and training opportunities for custom applicators.  For more information about manure management, training and educational opportunities, please contact Lindsey Ruhl from UVM Extension at (802)524-6501 or check out our events page for upcoming training opportunities.

There is also an online E-Course available. This course, which is the same course used to certify online, will provide a custom applicator with two (2) educational credits and it can also be used as a tool for training employees. In order to receive credit, the certificate of completion must be shared with VAAFM. To access the e-course go to https://campus.extension.org/ to enroll. For more information on how to enroll please see the e-course instructions. 

Contact and Questions:

For questions about the Custom Applicator Certification Program and how to become a certified applicator in Vermont, please contact VAAFM:

Mary Montour, Agricultural Water Quality Specialist:  (802) 461-6087 | Mary.Montour@vermont.gov

Jenn LaValley, PHARM, WQ & Enforcement: (802) 828-2431 | Jenn.LaValley@vermont.gov

For questions or more information about education and training opportunities, please contact UVM Extension:

Lindsey Ruhl, Crops and Soils Coordinator, UVM Extension: (802)524-6501 | lruhl@uvm.edu

For questions about the Required Agricultural Practices (RAPs), or how the rules pertain to custom applicators please contact VAAFM:

Laura Dipietro, Deputy Director Water Quality Division: (802) 595-1990 | Laura.Dipietro@vermont.gov

Ryan Patch, Assistant Director Water Quality Division:  (802) 272-0323 | Ryan.Patch@vermont.gov

Contact Information

Agency of Agriculture, Food & Markets

116 State Street
Montpelier, Vt 05620-2901
802.828.2430

 

Program Contacts

  • Media Inquiries                      802.622.4662
  • Licensing & Registration        802.828.2436
  • Business Development          802.828.1619
  • Feed, Seed, Fertilizer & Lime  802.828.5050
  • Working Lands                    802.622.4477
  • Public Health & Resource Management                802.828.2431
  • Laboratory                                  802.585.6073
  • Animal Health                        802.828.2421
  • Dairy                              802.828.2433
  • Consumer Protection / Weights & Measures                           802.828.2433
  • Produce Program                  802.522.7811
  • Meat Inspection                    802.828.2426
  • Water Quality                               802.828.2431
    • Grants                                  802.622.4098
    • Enforcement                                802.828.2431
    • Reports                                      802.272.0323
    • BMP's                                      802.828.3474
  • Act 250                          802.828.2431 
  • Pesticide                        802.828.2431