Agricultural Commissioner to launch new pesticide reporting system

VENTURA — Ventura County farmers and ranchers will soon have a faster and easier way to file pesticide use reports (PURs). The Agricultural Commissioner’s Office is preparing to launch a Web-based reporting system that will allow the mandatory reports to be filed electronically.

Growers and others responsible for filing PURs are invited to attend a workshop on Friday, Sept. 26, to learn more about the new reporting system. Sponsored by the Farm Bureau of Ventura County, the Ventura County Agricultural Association, and the Agricultural Commissioner’s Office, the workshop will be from 9:00 to 11:00 a.m. at the Courtyard by Marriott, 600 E. Esplanade Drive, Oxnard.

Since 1990, California has required that all agricultural pesticide use be reported monthly to the County Agricultural Commissioner, who in turn must report the data to the Department of Pesticide Regulation. The State has a broad legal definition of “agricultural use,” so the reporting requirements include pesticide applications to parks, golf courses, cemeteries, rangeland, pastures, and along roadside and railroad rights-of-way.

In addition, all post-harvest pesticide treatments of agricultural commodities must be reported, along with all pesticide treatments in poultry and fish production, as well as some livestock applications. The primary exceptions to the reporting requirements are home and garden use, and most industrial and institutional uses.

The electronic filing system is expected to speed up the process and reduce the cost of compliance. The Sept. 26 workshop will include a presentation by the Ventura County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office explaining how growers can sign up for the online reporting program. The Santa Barbara County Agricultural Commissioner’s Office will describe how the program has worked in that county, and representatives of companies that operate free electronic reporting systems for growers will demonstrate their services.

The workshop is free, but space is limited and reservations are required. Please contact the Farm Bureau at (805) 289-0155 no later than Tuesday, Sept. 23 to reserve a spot.