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UDAF Breaking News on Unsolicited Seed Packages

Individuals who have received these seeds are asked to deliver the packages in their entirety to the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) Plant Industry Division for analysis.

 

Residents can mail their packages to:
Utah Department of Agriculture and Food
ATTN: State Seed Lab
PO Box 146500
Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-6500 

Or drop them off at:
Utah Department of Agriculture and Food
ATTN: State Seed Lab
350 N. Redwood Road
Salt Lake City, Utah 84116 

 

UDAF’s State Seed Lab will continue identifying the seeds to determine whether they are on the Federal or State Noxious lists. Following the identification, the lab will destroy the material, to prevent it from entering Utah’s ecosystem.

Individuals who are unable to submit their seeds to UDAF are advised to destroy the seeds and/or plants according to the following instructions:

Dry heat (oven) method for Seeds:

–          Preheat oven to 325F (163C)
–          Place seeds in a monolayer on a baking pan (or cookie sheet)  lined with tinfoil
–          Dispose of empty seed packet in the trash.
–          Place seed in pre-heated oven and maintain for 30 min.
–          Remove from oven and allow to cool
–          Double bag the baked seeds in plastic baggies and dispose of in trash

Destruction options for potted seeds/plants:

–          Remove the plants (including soil) and place inside a plastic bag. Use the thickest plastic bag available. Squeeze as much air out of the bag as possible. Seal the bag.
–          Place inside a second plastic bag. Squeeze as much air out of the bag as possible. Seal second bag.
–          Dispose of the double-bagged plant material/soil into trash, do not compost.
–          Dispose of the planting container in 2 trash bags as described above (recommended).

Or:

–          Remove as much soil as possible from inside the pot with a paper towel.
–          Wash the planting container with soap and water to remove dirt.
–          Soak the planting container in a 10% bleach solution for 30 minutes, rinse and refrain from planting new material in the container for 12 months.
–          Collect runoff from washing the planting container and put it down the drain or toilet.

Destruction options for seeds/plants sowed in ground:

–          Remove the plants including the surrounding soil, including 3 inches of soil  around the seeds/plants.
–          Where seed germination has not occurred, remove the soil presumed to contain the planted seeds.
–          Place plant and soil material inside a plastic bag. Use the thickest plastic bag you have available. Squeeze as much air out of the bag as possible.  Seal the bag.
–          Place inside a second plastic bag. Squeeze as much air out of the bag as possible. Seal second bag.
–          Dispose of the double-bagged plant material/soil into trash, do not compost.
–          Refrain from planting new plants in the affected area for 12 months, and remove any plants that grow in the area.

For questions or further information, please contact Terry Freeman, Seed Lab Manager, at terryfreeman@utah.gov or click here to earn more here.

 

Agricultural Voluntary Incentive Program

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF) in cooperation with the Utah Division of Water Quality (DWQ) have begun the Voluntary Agricultural Incentive Program (AgVIP) to help farming operations develop Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plans (CNMPs) that will help producers maximize crop yields while staying in compliance with state water quality regulations and includes several financial incentives.

The application period for the Voluntary Agriculture Incentive Program will be July 1, 2020 to August 1st 2020.

 

Toxic Algae Bloom Around Zion’s National Park

Producers Near Warned to Prevent Animal Exposure to Toxic Algae Bloom Around Zion’s National Park

A Harmful Algae Bloom (HAB) was recently detected in the North Fork of the Virgin River in Zion National Park. The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food is issuing a warning to all producers with livestock along the 15 mile stretch of river from Zion National Park (ZNP), down to Virgin City, to use other sources of water, if available.

Preliminary research is showing that water taken from the Virgin River and distributed in stock tanks is safe. However, having animals drink directly from the river may expose them to the harmful algae. The algae found in the Virgin River seems to not pollute the water so long as it is not disturbed by movement such as animal crossings or recreational traffic. However, because producers cannot predict what is happening upriver from them, it is advised that they use
alternate water sources where available.

Animals that ingest cyanotoxins or cyanobacteria cells may show symptoms such as vomiting, lethargy, diarrhea, convulsions, difficulty breathing and general weakness. Consumption of cyanotoxins can result in livestock deaths.

For producers that irrigate, there is currently limited information on plant update of toxins. The main concern is protecting irrigators from these toxins. Individuals are encouraged to practice good hygiene, especially in the areas where they come in contact with irrigation water.

Microcoleus a benthic algae found in the North Fork of the Virgin River can produce high levels of anatoxin-a, a nervous system cyanotoxin and harmful cyanobacteria. Benthic Samples taken from the river have shown anatoxin-a concentration greater than 55 micrograms per liter in some samples. The Department of Water Quality (DWQ) and Utah Department of Health’s threshold for primary recreation is 15 micrograms per liter. Testing is currently on going from the area above where the river enters ZNP, down to Virgin City. Currently, water column samples taken from the river have not detected cyanotoxins.

UDAF is currently monitoring the situation with other agencies such as the Utah Department of Environmental Quality, Zion National Park, and the Department of Health, and the cities of Springdale, Rockville and Virgin, Utah.

Click here to learn more.

 

 

Utah Retail Outlets Can Now Apply to Sell Industrial Hemp Products

The Utah Agricultural Code and Hemp & Cannabinoid Act has been updated. All retail establishments selling industrial hemp products must have a permit to continue marketing and selling throughout the state. The permit is required for all Utah retailers to include online platforms based within the state. Retail businesses that are based out-of-state and sell hemp products online are not required to possess a retail permit, however, the products that are being sold to consumers in Utah must be registered with the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food. Utah retailers can apply here and pay $50 per location and per calendar year to receive a retail permit.

All retail establishments that market and/or sell industrial hemp products must apply for and maintain a hemp retail permit with the Utah Department of Agriculture and Food (UDAF). Industrial hemp products are defined as products containing hemp fiber, hemp seed oil, or products containing a cannabinoid (including CBD). The retail permit is an additional regulatory step to ensure products are being sold throughout the state are safe. Retailers must ensure all products being sold and marketed within their establishment are registered with the department to ensure compliance with permit conditions. UDAF inspectors are increasing inspection efforts throughout the state and will be reminding retailers to obtain a permit and verify that all products being sold in a retail establishment have been registered for the new fiscal year.

To register as a hemp retailer visit ag.utah.gov, click Online Services (Look Up, Renew, or Forms) and select New License Application. Scroll to the bottom and select 8003 Industrial – Hemp Retail. Fill out the applicable information and proceed to the online payment. Please allow five business days for the department to send the retail permit via email.

Cody James, Manager of Industrial Hemp & Medical Cannabis: “Industrial hemp and CBD products are an emerging and popular market. Unfortunately, this market is new enough that there is the ability for illegal or unsafe products to surface. Our program has been tasked with protecting the state’s consumers and companies associated with our program. Our job is to ensure all products in the marketplace are safe for consumers. This permit allows us to know who is selling and what products are being sold in the state, and gives us a way to verify state compliance and safety of the products.” The Utah Industrial Hemp and Medical Cannabis Program began in November 2018. Regulatory requirements continue to grow as the industry develops throughout the state. During the last fiscal year the department registered over 2,000 hemp products and licensed over 250 industrial hemp producers. The Utah Industrial Hemp and Medical Cannabis Program will continue protecting consumers from potentially harmful, illegal, and falsely labeled industrial hemp products.

If you would like more information about this topic, please call the Utah Industrial Hemp and Medical Cannabis Program at 801-982-2375 or email: hemp_udaf@utah.gov.

UDAF Watershed Coordinator Position Available

The Utah Department of Agriculture and Food is seeking qualified applicants for a Watershed Coordinator position. This Richfield-based coordinator will provide technical and administrative support in locally led watershed planning efforts.

For additional information and the application process, please visit: https://www.governmentjobs.com/careers/utah and search “Watershed Coordinator” – the application period will close 7/23/2020.

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