Certified Weed Free Forage
Noxious Weeds Program Coordinator
LINKS TO ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
What is certified weed-free forage?
It is hay or straw that was grown in fields that are free of any viable plant parts of any of the plant species listed on the Nevada Noxious Weed List or North American Invasive Species Management Association Noxious Weed List.
What forage products can be certified?
- Alfalfa hay
- Grass hay
- Alfalfa/grass mix hay
- Forage pellets and/or cubes
- Wheat or other grain hay
- Straw bales
How can you get your forage certified?
Certifications are obtained through the Nevada Department of Agriculture. Contact the Nevada Department of Agriculture at 775-353-3601 to request an inspection or fill out a Weed Free Certification Inspection Request Form.
In order to get certification the products must pass an inspection in the field of origin no more than 10 days before being cut. An inspection must be conducted before each cutting in each field in order for products to keep certified weed-seed-free status. Nevada Department of Inspectors will visually examine the field of origin, storage areas, and surrounding areas of the forage to ensure forage products will not get contaminated once certified. Agriculture inspectors must walk through and around each field before it is cut and visually verify the products meet one of the following forage certification standard gradings:
A) MEETS: There are no noxious weeds from either Nevada’s or NAISMA’s noxious weed lists present in or around the field. This forage may contain variable amounts of annual weeds and/or other weeds not listed as prohibited or noxious.
B) COMPLIES WITH MINIMUM: This forage contains variable amounts of Prohibited or Noxious weed species which were immature, had no viable seed when harvested, or were treated to prevent seed formation. These plants, or plant parts, although not usually desirable in the forage product, are not considered to be able to begin new infestations.
How do you know forage products are certified weed-free?
All producers whose products are certified to the NAISMA standards by the Nevada Department of Agriculture are given a Certificate of Inspection and a Transit Certificate. These forms are kept on the premises where the products are sold. Anyone interested in purchasing the certified weed free forage products can ask a producer to see these forms. These forms indicate if any noxious weeds or undesirable plants were found in or around the field of origin and specify the certification grading of the products. Copies of Transit Certificates should be given to buyers at the time of purchase to accompany the certified products that were sold.
Forage products in the form of bales are also baled with special Certified Weed-Free Program twine. As of right now, the twine color is purple and yellow. All baled certified weed free hay or straw must have one line of the special twine to indicate its weed free certified status.