Agriculture and Food - Plant Industry - Utah Fertilizer Rule

Published: 2020-11-16

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R68. Agriculture and Food, Plant Industry.
R68-3. Utah Fertilizer Rule.
R68-3-1. Authority.
Promulgated under authority of Subsection 4-2-103(1)(i) and Section 4-13-104.
R68-3-2. Registration of Products.
A. Fertilizer or soil amendment distributed in Utah shall be registered with the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food, unless labeling shows that the product does not claim to contain any plant nutrients or beneficial plant growth properties.
1. The following are exempt from registration in Utah:
a. biochar;
b. compost;
c. landscape soil;
d. mulch;
e. nitrogen stabilizers;
f. peat;
g. perlite;
h. plant inoculant;
i. planting mix;
j. potting soil;
k. seed inoculant;
l. vermicompost; or
m. vermiculite.
2. Application for registration shall be made to the department upon a form prescribed and provided by the department. Each application shall include the registrant's name, address, and other contact information prescribed on the form, as well as the following information for each product:
a. the brand and grade;
b. the guaranteed analysis; and
c. the label for each product registered.
3. The registrant of a waste-derived fertilizer shall state in the application for registration the levels of non-nutritive metals, including arsenic, cadmium, mercury, lead and selenium. Upon request, the registrant will provide a laboratory report or other documentation verifying the levels of the non-nutritive metals in the waste-derived fertilizer.
4. The department may require submission of the complete formula of any fertilizer or soil amendment if it shall be deemed necessary for administration of Title 4, Chapter 13, the Utah Fertilizer Act. If it appears to the department that the composition of the product is such as to warrant the proposed claims for it, and if the product and its labeling and any other information which may be required to be submitted comply with the requirements of the Act, the product shall be registered.
5. Before registering any soil amendment, the department may require evidence to substantiate the claims made for the soil amendment and proof of the value and usefulness of the soil amendment. For evidence of proof, the department may rely on experimental data, evaluation, or advice from a source that understands the conditions for which the product is intended. Cost for research shall be the responsibility of the applicant. Final decision concerning registration of a soil amendment shall be made by the department following evaluation of evidence presented.
6. The registrant is responsible for the accuracy and completeness of information submitted concerning application for registration of a fertilizer or soil amendment.
7. A registration fee, determined by the department pursuant to Subsection 4-2-103(2), per product, shall be paid by the applicant annually.
8. Each registration is renewable for a period of one year upon payment of the annual renewal fee, which shall be paid by December 31 of each year. If the renewal of a fertilizer or soil amendment registration is not received by December 31 of any year, an additional fee, determined by the department pursuant to Subsection 4-2-103(2), shall be assessed per product and added to the original registration fee and shall be paid by the applicant before the registration renewal for that fertilizer or soil amendment will be issued.
9. Whenever the name of fertilizer or soil amendment product is changed or there are changes in the product ingredients or guaranteed analysis, a new registration is required. Other labeling changes shall not require re-registration, but the registrant shall submit copies of changes to the department as soon as they are effective. A reasonable time may be permitted to dispose of properly labeled stocks of the old product.
10. A blender is not required to register each grade of fertilizer or soil amendment formulated by a consumer before mixing, but is required to license the name under which the business of blending or mixing is conducted and to pay an annual blender's license fee determined by the department pursuant to Subsection 4-2-103(2). A blender's license shall expire after December 31 of the year it is issued. A blender's license is renewable for a period of one year upon the payment of an annual license renewal fee. If the renewal of a fertilizer or soil amendment blender license is not received by December 31 of any year, an additional fee determined by the department pursuant to Subsection 4-2-103(2), shall be assessed to and paid by the applicant before the blender license will be issued.
R68-3-3. Product Labeling.
A. When any reference is made upon the label, labeling, or graphic material of a fertilizer or soil amendment to "trace elements," "minor elements," "secondary elements," "plant foods," or similar generalized terms, each individual plant food to which such term refers shall be listed upon the label.
B. Other plant nutrients, when mentioned in any form or manner, shall be registered and shall be guaranteed. Each guarantee shall be made on the elemental basis. Sources of the elements guaranteed and proof of availability shall be provided to the department upon request. An exception is made for guarantees for those water-soluble nutrients labeled for ready to use foliar fertilizer, ready to use specialty liquid fertilizer, hydroponic or continuous liquid feed programs, and guarantees for potting, garden, and lawn soils. The minimum percentages that will be accepted for registration are as follows:
Element Minimum
Concentration %
Calcium (Ca) 1.0000
Magnesium (Mg) 0.5000
Sulfur (S) 1.0000
Boron (B) 0.0200
Chlorine (Cl) 0.1000
Cobalt (Co) 0.0005
Copper (Cu) 0.0500
Iron (Fe) 0.1000
Manganese (Mn) 0.0500
Molybdenum (Mo) 0.0005
Nickel (Ni) 0.0010
Sodium (Na) 0.1000
Zinc (Zn) 0.0500
Guarantees or claims for the plant nutrients listed in Table 1
are the only ones that will be accepted. Each proposed label
and directions for the use of the fertilizer shall be furnished
with the application for registration upon request. Any of the
elements listed in Table 1 that are guaranteed shall appear in
the order listed immediately following guarantees for the
primary nutrients of nitrogen, phosphate, and potash.
C. Slowly released plant nutrients.
1. No fertilizer label shall bear a statement that implies that certain plan nutrients contained in a fertilizer are released slowly over a period of time, unless each slow release component is identified and guaranteed at a level of at least 15% of the total guarantee for that nutrient.
2. Types of products with slow release properties recognized are:
a. water insoluble, such as natural organics, ureaform materials, urea-formaledhyde products, isobutylidene diurea oxamine;
b. coated slow release, such as sulfur coated urea and other encapsulated soluble fertilizers;
c. occluded slow release where fertilizers or fertilizer materials are mixed with waxes, resins, or other inert materials and formed into particles; and
d. products containing water soluble nitrogen, such as ureaform materials, urea-formaldehyde products, methylene urea (MDU), dimethylentriurea (DMTU), dicyanodiamide (DCD).
3. The terms, such as "water insoluble," "coated slow release," "slow release," "controlled release," "slowly available water soluble," and "occluded slow release" are accepted as descriptive of these products.
4. The department may require evidence and an acceptable testing procedure to substantiate each claim.
D. Pesticide may be added to registered fertilizer or soil amendment, provided:
1. the fertilizer, soil amendment, and pesticide is registered; and
2. each fertilizer or soil amendment pesticide mixture shall have a label showing the information required in this rule and in Section 4-14-104.
E. Format exemptions. The department may exempt a fertilizer from any guaranteed analysis format requirement under Section 4-13-104 if the person requesting the exemption demonstrates the following to the department's satisfaction:
1. another state that has authorized sale of the fertilizer has a conflicting statute or regulation;
2. the format exemption will reconcile the conflict under Section 4-13-104;
3. the format exemption will not affect, to the detriment of purchasers in this state, any claim or disclosure related to product performance, use, purpose, efficacy, or active ingredients;
4. the format exemption will not cause the product label to be false, deceptive, or misleading in any respect;
5. the format required by the other state satisfies the objectives of Section 4-13-104; or
6. the format required by the other state does not violate applicable labeling requirements, if any, under Section 4-13-104.
R68-3-4. Deficiencies of Ingredients.
A fertilizer shall be deemed deficient if the analysis of any nutrient is below the guarantee by an amount exceeding the values in the Association of American Plant Food Control Officials (AAPFCO) Investigational Allowance Tables, 2019 version, which are hereby incorporated by reference, or if the overall index value of the fertilizer is below 98%.
R68-3-5. Unlawful Acts.
A. Any person who has committed any act in violation of Title 4, Chapter 13, the Utah Fertilizer Act or rules promulgated thereunder, is subject to penalties provided for in Subsection 4-2-304(1)(a). Unlawful acts include that the person:
1. made a false or fraudulent claim through any media misrepresenting the effect of fertilizer or soil amendment offered for sale in Utah;
2. neglected or, after notice, refused to comply with the provisions of the Act, these rules, or any lawful order of the department;
3. made false or fraudulent records, invoices, or reports;
4. used fraud or misrepresentation in making application for, or renewal of, a registration or license;
5. distributed fertilizer or soil amendment that contains seeds or other viable plant parts or noxious weeds;
6. distributed any waste-derived fertilizer that was not identified in the registration application; or
7. did not store fertilizer and soil amendment in a manner that minimizes the release of fertilizer and soil amendment and protects the environment.
B. Biosolids, and compost products, separately or in any combination, shall be adulterated when they exceed the levels of metals permitted by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations under 40 CFR Part 503.
C. Dried biosolids and manure, as well as manipulated manure products, either separately or in combination, shall also be deemed adulterated when they exceed the levels of metals permitted under 40 CFR Part 503.
D. Hazardous waste derived fertilizer, as defined by the EPA, shall be adulterated when it exceeds the level of metals permitted by EPA regulations under 40 CFR Parts 261, 266, and 268.
KEY: fertilizers
Date of Enactment or Last Substantive Amendment: November 16, 2020
Notice of Continuation: October 15, 2019
Authorizing, and Implemented or Interpreted Law: 4-2-103(1)(i); 4-13-104