Overview of the Certification Program
February 19, 2021
So a quick overview. What is the program, program levels a little blurb about the website and the deal for the certification program for attending the summit. And a little bit about the partnership behind the summit and some contact information if you all have questions and wanna talk to a person afterwards. So we'll jump right in. What is the Michigan Manure Hauler Certification Program? With COVID and everything we got a little delayed and it is a new program. So it's a training program for really anyone who applies manure and it's coupled with an economic incentive for improved nutrient management plan implementation. And that's just a way of saying it's you gonna get training certified and third party audits and that's all without implementing a mandatory program cause it is a voluntary program. And the goals are simple, prevent manure application problems, increase nutrient management plan implementation demonstrate responsible manure application, increase base level of manure management knowledge for all employees and improve the professionalism among manure applicators. So that was just a broad overview. And now we're gonna go into the levels. Levels one, two, and three. So hopefully easy to remember and I'm gonna go through kind of what that means. So our first, the first level starts with the MSU extension online course. And you get three times to achieve, you know the minimum score of 80%. And once you're done with the course you should have a minimum knowledge of performance of knowledge and performance on manure spill response, manure management regulations, common sense manure application and safety. In addition, after you've completed the online course myself or someone from the Michigan Farm Bureau Family of Companies will schedule an inspection and someone will come out to you and work, look through all your equipment that you use to apply manure and go through and that'll meet a bronze level or performance. So that's listed on the website. So this isn't meant to be a surprise. You can go to the website and see all those checkpoints and make sure you're all set for your, for your inspection. And we call it an inspection but it's really meant to work with you to make sure everything meets those, those standards. And then once you're done and you've passed, your course you've passed your inspection. You're able to get a 5% discount from Farm Bureau Insurance on the liability and farm personal personal property sections of the farm policy. So that is a great option for those looking to get some of that economic incentive mentioned in the beginning. Level two is a little bit different. It has two options. Option one is only for farms and that would be to become or be currently verified in the livestock system of the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program or MEAP program. And then option two, this is also available farms and then also available for anyone who can't become MEAP verified which is curious supervisors and business owners completing six hours of continuing education approved by MSU extension that's over a two year period. And so both of these options do include also include another inspection completed by someone from the Farm Bureau Family of Companies. And those inspection that equipment must meet the silver level of performance which is the bronze level plus additional inspection points. And I will add that I'm not gonna touch too much on what the inspection looks like. Craig Anderson will be covering that and I he'll have a great presentation for us next. So a couple of more details as I mentioned, MEAP verification in the livestock system is only available for farms. And again, if you're a farm and you don't want to or unable to get that MEAP verified in the livestock system you can always elect the continuing education hours to achieve that level two certification. But one of the benefits of selecting the option of getting MEAP verified is farms will have nearly all the information necessary to create the environmental management systems plan needed to achieve level three certification. In addition, for level two you can request an inspection at any time. So if you're working towards your verification or you're working to complete your continuing education hours that can be something that can be done at any time. So if you're like, I just repaired all my equipment. It's great. And I want someone to come out now, you know, that's that's an option that we have to work with you to schedule that. And then for the insurance discount you'll get that 5% discount from farm Bureau Insurance still. And then also we are we're going to include some additional incentives such as holders for your daily checklists or EMS plans magnets for important spill response numbers or slow moving vehicle signs, just depending on, you know what we have and are able to have at that time. So for the last level is first, creation of environmental management systems plan. I'm not gonna touch on this because both breakout sessions tomorrow have a session on this. And I think that'll be great opportunity to be able to work with MSU and go into depth about that. So just know that's coming tomorrow and it'll be great. And you can contact Charles Gould, Erica Rogers, or Sarah Fronczak with any questions. And that information, contact information will be on the last slide. And then again, if you're sensing a theme a manure application equipment inspection for this time it will be the gold level of performance. So bronze plus silver plus additional inspection points. So as you move through the levels there are more inspection points added to each inspection. And again, this is all on the website. So this is meant to, you know, work together and like so you can go look at those checklists and make those preparations before we come out to your farm or operation. And for the level three insurance discount there'll be a 10% discount provided on the liability and farm personal property sections of the farm policy. So now that theoretically you've gone through and gotten certified in one or more of the levels and again, you can do whatever level you can move through those levels as far as you want, or as little as you want, depending on what's best for your operation. So it's very, you can just stop at level one if you'd like and then you can go all the way to level three. It really is up to you on how you wanna move forward. But how do you remain certified? So during your yearly inspection at whatever level you're certified at and then attending the Manure Management Summit which congratulations you're already once checked off this list. And then also just making sure you're up to date on your two level two and three requirements. So making sure your EMS plan is up-to-date and it has been vetted yearly by someone from the Farm Bureau Family of Companies and then keeping up to date on either your MEAP verification or your continuing education hours. Again, I mentioned this, but please, if you have questions if you want to know more this is a 10 minute presentation, really go to MSU's, website. There's, FAQ's, there's deep more details and inspection checklist tools to help you build your EMS plan. So I'd really, really encouraged you to go to that website if you're really interested. And that's also where you can sign up for level one. Once you get that code, which I will talk about here since if you attend both days of the summit you'll be able to register to start level one of the certification program for free through February 28th. Again, you just have to start it and like, get that code in. It's like a coupon code that expires. You don't have to finish level one by February 28th. So if this is something you're interested I would really encourage you to look for that code after the summit. And really, you know, if that's something you're interested go for it and save some money while you're at it. So I would just like to wrap up with that, the Manure Hauler Certification Program is brought to you in partnership by the Michigan Farm Bureau Family of companies and Michigan State University in Extension. It has been great to work with both Farm Bureau Insurance and MSU Extension to move this program forward. And we really look forward to that continuing that partnership to help make this a great program. So I just wanted to share all who all is involved in making this program successful. And I'll end, this is the contact slide. If you all of this information is also on the website. So if you don't have a chance to jot it down then take a picture with your phone It's all on the MSU's Manure Hauler Certification website. Please feel free to reach out to us with any questions or if you wanna chat about the program.