International Clients
Australia
Canada
South America
×
 
Main Menu
Select A Category
About Us
Hot Topics
International Clients
Resources
Training Centers
 
Back to Main Menu
Hot Topics
Consolidation Chart
Helping Your CDL Drivers...
How To Comply (CFATS)
Prepare for a DOT Audit
PSM for Ag Retailers
Restricted CDL Report
 
Back to Main Menu
International Clients
Australia
Canada
South America
 
<
 
List
 
>
Newsletter
Volume 178
September 4, 2018

Electronic Training Return Program, Version 2.0 Launched!

Today, our IT team rolled out our new updated training return program.  This new program is considered state of the art because it is completely electronic.  Our training department is comprised of Sherri, Carol and Chelsea - all dedicated employees who handle more than 50,000 training certificates per month.  For nearly 30 years we have aspired for the highest degree of accuracy and efficiency within each of the daily training processes.  We find ourselves constantly on the hunt for new technologies that can be applied to our processes to make things faster, easier, more accurate or all of the above.

In the past when completed training certificates were uploaded to us, they would all go to Carol, who then printed them off - all 600,000+ certificates per year.  At that point the certificates would go through a series of processes that included printing, hand-sorting and authentication.  Once they passed those steps, they were scanned back into the system to be graded, and then electronically archived.  This system has been used for years and was proven to be extremely accurate and reasonably efficient, but with new technology at our finger tips, we have upgraded our system to the next level.

Amy Cornell Receives Women in Agribusiness Demeter Award of Excellence

Congratulations to Amy Cornell, president of the Agribusiness Council of Indiana (ACI), who has been selected as one of three recipients for the 2018 Women in Agribusiness Demeter Award of Excellence.  The award recognizes those who have achieved excellence in their field or demonstrated an extraordinary contribution to the agribusiness industry.  Amy was nominated as a leader in the areas of agricultural law and policy, and as the “greatest champion” for Indiana’s 90,000 farmers and the 245,000 people who work in the sector.  We are proud to be affiliated with ACI and extend our congratulations to Amy for receiving this award.

Welcome to the Buttonwillow Warehouse Company!

It's always great news when you learn a new client is coming onboard.  Founded in 1948, the Buttonwillow Warehouse Company (BWC) is a family owned and operated business with over sixty years of experience in California agriculture.  Started as a grain elevator and warehouse, the Buttonwillow Warehouse Company diversified into distributing fertilizers and crop protection products in the early 1970's.  Over the last 45 years, BWC has grown to 11 retail fertilizer and crop protection locations covering over 9 different counties in California.  Welcome to the BWC team as they settle into the retainer program over the next few months!

Safety School Celebrates 40 Years

The 40th annual National Agronomic Environmental Health and Safety School was held August 21-22 in Bloomington at the Asmark Institute Agricenter.  The school celebrated 40 years by giving each participant a limited edition 1956 Ford F-100 toy truck custom made to commemorate the anniversary. Nearly 130 folks attended and heard from a great variety of national, industry and agency speakers on timely topics.  The Safety School is the premier meeting where EHS&S professionals from coast to coast gather to network and learn about important and relevant issues affecting ag retailers. Jay Vroom, President and CEO of CropLife America, was the keynote and provided his 30+ year perspective on how the industry has changed and evolved along with his view of how safety must remain front and center going forward.  JJ Keller’s, Tom Bray, covered electronic logging and OSHA’s, Brian Bothast, covered fall protection.  Both Tom and Brian are long-time presenters that are consistently top-rated by the attendees year after year.

Pete Mutschler with CHS, Inc. presented an update on the ResponsibleAg program and its value to not only his company over the past four years but the industry.  Roger Waller, Agri-AFC EH&S Manager and Kip Landwehr, Winfield United EH&S Manager, shared some very valuable “lessons learned” on pesticide repackaging from a recent experience.  An update on the Worker Protection Standards was given by Dustin Warder, Asmark’s Manager of Regulatory Affairs, and Joe Becovitz, Pesticide Program Specialist with the Office of Indiana State Chemist.  Closing out the meeting was Purdue Pesticide Program Coordinator and Safety School President, Dr. Fred Whitford, who talked about actual case studies of accidents involving trucks, trailers and application equipment.  Dr. Whitford’s lively and engaging presentations are always a highlight for participants.

The 2019 Safety School dates will be August 20-21, 2019.  Registration for 2019 is open now and those who pre-register prior to October 1, 2018 will receive one of the 40th anniversary commemorative toy trucks while supplies last.   Supplies are very limited so hurry!  Click here to register today.

EZ-Update Feature Released: “The Hub”

One of the jobs here at Asmark that hasn’t changed since our very first day, is sorting the mail.  Every day we receive tubs of incoming mail from all corners of the country with various types of documents stuffed into one envelope.  All mail is sorted and delivered on the same day.  To ensure that each piece of mail makes it to the correct department within our organization, we have one person designated to handle all incoming mail.  Our dedicated mail sorter, Joann, will open, sort, then deliver each piece of mail to the appropriate department.  By having only one person responsible, it adds a high level of efficiency and veracity that you wouldn’t get if you had multiple people picking through the tubs.  With technology developing as it is, we have been able to take this thought process and apply it to the EZ-Update feature on Snapshots.

Today we introduced a new feature within EZ-Update, called “The Hub.” For our clients that return documents electronically, this new feature is where you upload everything.  Instead of having a different upload button for every document, we now have a single upload place for both employee-related and facility-related documents.  This means you don’t have to search through a list to find the correct place to upload documents, instead you will upload all categories of documents in the same spot.  For example, if you have completed your new hire kit and want to send it to us, instead of having to perform multiple uploads you will be able to do it in just one.  This new feature adds simplicity and time-saving value for you, the client, with each use while maintaining the high level of efficiency and veracity on our end.

It's Time to Register With ResponsibleAg

More than 2,520 facilities have registered with the ResponsibleAg Certification Program, with 1,169 facilities already receiving their certification. We encourage you to register your facilities today! For more information and to register, go to: www.responsibleag.org

Addressing Lights on Nurse Wagons

Work continues after a federal law requires manufacturers of nurse wagons to include lights on any trailer manufactured after June 2017.  Jean Payne and John Rebholz with the Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association (IFCA) recently made a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Society of Ag & Biological Engineers (ASABE) in Detroit to explain the issue and propose alternatives to the new requirement.  IFCA has been working with the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) and ASABE to seek more flexibility on this standard.  The presentation resulted in the formation of a small working group to come up with a resolution.  Our thanks to John Rebholz for volunteering to be on the subcommittee!  This comes with good timing as input can also be given as the group is considering requiring brakes on nurse wagons in the future.  While we are already seeing the problems of the inability to hook the light terminals up to older toolbars or when nurse tanks are pulled in combinations, the addition of brakes would greatly compound maintenance issues as these trailers are used in the field of application.

Idaho DMV Plagued by Outages

The Idaho Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has released a statement regarding recent outages affecting the issuance of driver’s license services in Idaho.  Statewide outages have forced sheriff-run driver’s licensing offices to close their doors while troubleshooting continues.  For now, the solution is to eliminate the dependency on the real time communication with vendor software allowing county staff to input customer information in person without having to communicate in real time with the vendor. Information will be stored on a server and then provided to the vendor at the end of the day.

Anyone with a license that is going to expire in the near future should contact the Idaho Transportation Department for a letter extending the expiration date for expiring driver’s licenses and identification cards through October 31.  Click here for more information.

EPA to Ban Chlorpyrifos

The US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has ordered the EPA to finalize a proposed ban on the insecticide chlorpyrifos.  The ruling gives EPA 60 days to revoke all allowable limits in food and cancel all approved uses for the pesticide.  Chlorpyrifos has been in the regulatory spotlight since 2015, when the agency proposed to ban the chemical but did not finalize the rule.  This decision will have far-reaching effects as chlorpyrifos has been used since 1965 in the US and is still commonly used on dozens of food crops, including fruits, vegetables and nuts. Nationally, it is found in products registered by about 20 different companies and sold under various brands, including Lorsban and Cobalt Advanced.

Citations Issued After Two Workers Engulfed

OSHA has cited a grain company in Kansas after two workers were fatally engulfed in a soybean storage bin.  The company faces proposed penalties of $507,374, and was placed in the Agency’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program.  Citations were issued for failing to provide employees with lifelines and fall protection: lockout equipment; provide rescue equipment; and allowing employees to enter a bin in which bridged or hung up grain was present.  “Moving grain acts like quicksand and can bury a worker in seconds,” said OSHA Regional Administrator Kimberly Stille.  “This tragedy could have been prevented if the employer had provided workers with proper safety equipment and followed required safety procedures to protect workers from grain bin hazards.”  The company has contested the citations and will appear before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

OSHA Redesigns Regulations Webpage

OSHA redesigned the Law and Regulations webpage that features information on standards and rulemaking.  Users can now search standards by keyword or number, find a list of key resources and see the latest updates on active rulemaking.  The page also features information buttons to explain regulatory language that may be unfamiliar to some users.  Click here to visit the revised page to learn how OSHA accomplishes its mission through rulemaking.

Experienced Applicator Training Course - Registration Now Open!

The Asmark Institute and AGCO Corporation have teamed up to offer the second new training course to help experienced applicators become the most professional applicators possible.  Not to be confused with the 4-day course for beginners, this new 2-day course is designed specifically for applicators with three or more years of experience, and is dedicated to continuing the development and education of professional applicators.  This cutting edge course is lead by Greg Yoder and Gary Cornell, who have a combined total of 90 years of experience in the field.  Both instructors started their careers as professional applicators and bring a wealth of knowledge to the course.

This course is essentially a refresher and “re-boot” experience for seasoned applicators. Over the past two decades, operators have developed skills limited to certain products such as glyphosate.  Currently, we are entering an era of prescription weed control, where every field could require a different tank mix to control pesticide-resistant weeds.  Applicators need to be armed with all the skills and knowledge possible to perform their duties as a professional applicator.  This course will cover the following topics and help provide the tools necessary to accomplish this.

Topics covered
  • Weed Identification
  • Assessing Each Field
  • Safety on the Road
  • Maintenance
  • Understanding Product Labels
  • Field Math
  • Measurements
  • Calibration - Liquid and Dry
  • New Chemistry & Challenges
  • Difference in Tank Additives
  • Drift Management Options & Strategies
  • Tank Cleanout
  • Recordkeeping
  • Tabletop Scenarios
The Experienced Applicator Training course is a very hands-on course held in a classroom filled with scenarios, demonstrations and exercises.  The 2-day course will be offered from November through March since there are no driving exercises or scenarios outdoors.  Participants will learn and build upon their experience to become proficient in the skills required of a professional applicator.  Each part of the course builds the participants knowledge-base and over the progression of the two days, creates a comprehensive thought process.  To learn more about the new course and to register, click here.

New Experienced Applicator Course - Weed Identification

To help applicators be prepared as possible we’re introducing a high-tech and hopefully fun weed identification exercise in the new Experienced Applicator Course - launching this November.  Too many times an applicator arrives at the field with their load, only to realize the weeds in the field are not the same weeds the order said they were.  If the applicator knows how to identify the weeds, then he or she can check the field to be sprayed against the order to ensure the application will be effective.  This new exercise will consist of a virtual reality headset, with a screen capable of showing 3D images of different weeds that the participants will learn to identify.  By being able to recognize and identify weeds, it adds skills to the applicator, which then adds value to the retailer and on to the farmer.

Back in the good ol’ days, when teaching applicators about weed identification, the exercise’s were limited to using potted plants, which restricted it to be seasonal.  But with this virtual reality system, it not only engages the participants, but it also adds a level of high tech with it’s realistic visuals, and convenience as it can be used any where and any time of year.  This new exercise would not be possible without the help of Chris Weed with Kova Fertilizer Inc., who came up with the idea, and  Dr. Aaron Hager with the University of Illinois, who helped make it happen, and Tyler Marlman with Asmark Institute, who programmed the VR headsets.

Containment Repair or Replace Workshop Was a Do Not Miss Event!

EHS&S professionals and State regulatory agencies from twelve states came together for a jam-packed one day workshop discussing how to evaluate cracks to determine what can be successfully repaired.  The workshop was eye-opening to say the least.  If you didn’t attend this workshop then sometime within the next three years you will regret it.  Read on for the next opportunity.

The condition of secondary containment structures is one of the hottest topics with the agency in each state that is tasked with regulating the issue.  The issue is not enough credible information around to help them - or the industry decides what actions to take in their state.  If you have concrete containment areas, then you have cracks - in what is supposed to be a water-tight structure.  Granted some are worse than others, but none are getting better as they age.  Everyone is looking for guidance on cracks and how to repair them, and if you don’t realize that yet, then you soon will.

The big takeaway from the workshop unfortunately was that only a few cracks truly lend themselves to being successfully repaired, and it all depends on whether the structure is sound, or not.  A structure that is not sound allows for both sides of the crack to move.  This movement practically eliminates any chance of a successful repair.  Sure, for the right price anything can be repaired but the expense to successfully repair a crack can reach 50-75% of the cost of a new structure.

This workshop helped define the standard going forward in our industry based on the feedback we received from the participants.  All the credit for a highly successful workshop goes to Dr. Kim Basham, PhD, PE, FACI, who is a Senior Structural Engineer with an extensive history of experience.  He specializes in structural analysis, concrete design, mix designs, concrete specifications and preconstruction, formwork, shoring and reshoring, temporary structures, mass concrete placements, concrete forensic investigations, structural evaluations, condition surveys, destructive and nondestructive testing, concrete repair, concrete construction techniques, concrete technology and research.  Dr. Basham has served as Chair of the World of Concrete (WOC) Education Advisory Committee. This committee is made up of industry experts who represent the concrete industry as a whole. Each year they prepare an unparalleled educational program covering new techniques and current issues. He currently serves as a technical consultant for the World of Concrete Education Program and also teaches several courses at WOC.

So if you are one of those people that missed this outstanding workshop (that was provided free by the Asmark Institute Inspire program) then your next chance to get up to speed on this subject will be a little pricey but is the World of Concrete Convention in Las Vegas on January 21-25, 2019.  Spending a couple thousand dollars here will almost surely save you tens of thousands of dollars somewhere in your future.  We recommend you attend two - 3-hour seminars (“TH13” and “FR14”) taught by Dr. Basham.  Click here to learn more about the World of Concrete Convention.  Tip:  Register early - as in September - if you want to attend economically and have good seats.

For those who attended the workshop - Thanks!  For the rest, we hope your concrete never cracks and that you are able to join us when we have someone special like this come in to perform one of these workshops.

National Labor Law Poster Updates

Considering the magnitude of state and federal agencies in existence today, it’s no surprise that labor laws are constantly changing.  The Federal Wage and Labor Law Institute (FWLLI) tracks these updates for us and we provide results for you.  Wondering if you need a poster update?  Click here to check for the latest Federal and/or State updates to the labor law posters.

Electronic Training Return Program, Version 2.0 Launched!

Today, our IT team rolled out our new updated training return program.  This new program is considered state of the art because it is completely electronic.  Our training department is comprised of Sherri, Carol and Chelsea - all dedicated employees who handle more than 50,000 training certificates per month.  For nearly 30 years we have aspired for the highest degree of accuracy and efficiency within each of the daily training processes.  We find ourselves constantly on the hunt for new technologies that can be applied to our processes to make things faster, easier, more accurate or all of the above.

In the past when completed training certificates were uploaded to us, they would all go to Carol, who then printed them off - all 600,000+ certificates per year.  At that point the certificates would go through a series of processes that included printing, hand-sorting and authentication.  Once they passed those steps, they were scanned back into the system to be graded, and then electronically archived.  This system has been used for years and was proven to be extremely accurate and reasonably efficient, but with new technology at our finger tips, we have upgraded our system to the next level.

Amy Cornell Receives Women in Agribusiness Demeter Award of Excellence

Congratulations to Amy Cornell, president of the Agribusiness Council of Indiana (ACI), who has been selected as one of three recipients for the 2018 Women in Agribusiness Demeter Award of Excellence.  The award recognizes those who have achieved excellence in their field or demonstrated an extraordinary contribution to the agribusiness industry.  Amy was nominated as a leader in the areas of agricultural law and policy, and as the “greatest champion” for Indiana’s 90,000 farmers and the 245,000 people who work in the sector.  We are proud to be affiliated with ACI and extend our congratulations to Amy for receiving this award.

Welcome to the Buttonwillow Warehouse Company!

It's always great news when you learn a new client is coming onboard.  Founded in 1948, the Buttonwillow Warehouse Company (BWC) is a family owned and operated business with over sixty years of experience in California agriculture.  Started as a grain elevator and warehouse, the Buttonwillow Warehouse Company diversified into distributing fertilizers and crop protection products in the early 1970's.  Over the last 45 years, BWC has grown to 11 retail fertilizer and crop protection locations covering over 9 different counties in California.  Welcome to the BWC team as they settle into the retainer program over the next few months!

Safety School Celebrates 40 Years

The 40th annual National Agronomic Environmental Health and Safety School was held August 21-22 in Bloomington at the Asmark Institute Agricenter.  The school celebrated 40 years by giving each participant a limited edition 1956 Ford F-100 toy truck custom made to commemorate the anniversary. Nearly 130 folks attended and heard from a great variety of national, industry and agency speakers on timely topics.  The Safety School is the premier meeting where EHS&S professionals from coast to coast gather to network and learn about important and relevant issues affecting ag retailers. Jay Vroom, President and CEO of CropLife America, was the keynote and provided his 30+ year perspective on how the industry has changed and evolved along with his view of how safety must remain front and center going forward.  JJ Keller’s, Tom Bray, covered electronic logging and OSHA’s, Brian Bothast, covered fall protection.  Both Tom and Brian are long-time presenters that are consistently top-rated by the attendees year after year.

Pete Mutschler with CHS, Inc. presented an update on the ResponsibleAg program and its value to not only his company over the past four years but the industry.  Roger Waller, Agri-AFC EH&S Manager and Kip Landwehr, Winfield United EH&S Manager, shared some very valuable “lessons learned” on pesticide repackaging from a recent experience.  An update on the Worker Protection Standards was given by Dustin Warder, Asmark’s Manager of Regulatory Affairs, and Joe Becovitz, Pesticide Program Specialist with the Office of Indiana State Chemist.  Closing out the meeting was Purdue Pesticide Program Coordinator and Safety School President, Dr. Fred Whitford, who talked about actual case studies of accidents involving trucks, trailers and application equipment.  Dr. Whitford’s lively and engaging presentations are always a highlight for participants.

The 2019 Safety School dates will be August 20-21, 2019.  Registration for 2019 is open now and those who pre-register prior to October 1, 2018 will receive one of the 40th anniversary commemorative toy trucks while supplies last.   Supplies are very limited so hurry!  Click here to register today.

EZ-Update Feature Released: “The Hub”

One of the jobs here at Asmark that hasn’t changed since our very first day, is sorting the mail.  Every day we receive tubs of incoming mail from all corners of the country with various types of documents stuffed into one envelope.  All mail is sorted and delivered on the same day.  To ensure that each piece of mail makes it to the correct department within our organization, we have one person designated to handle all incoming mail.  Our dedicated mail sorter, Joann, will open, sort, then deliver each piece of mail to the appropriate department.  By having only one person responsible, it adds a high level of efficiency and veracity that you wouldn’t get if you had multiple people picking through the tubs.  With technology developing as it is, we have been able to take this thought process and apply it to the EZ-Update feature on Snapshots.

Today we introduced a new feature within EZ-Update, called “The Hub.” For our clients that return documents electronically, this new feature is where you upload everything.  Instead of having a different upload button for every document, we now have a single upload place for both employee-related and facility-related documents.  This means you don’t have to search through a list to find the correct place to upload documents, instead you will upload all categories of documents in the same spot.  For example, if you have completed your new hire kit and want to send it to us, instead of having to perform multiple uploads you will be able to do it in just one.  This new feature adds simplicity and time-saving value for you, the client, with each use while maintaining the high level of efficiency and veracity on our end.

It's Time to Register With ResponsibleAg

More than 2,520 facilities have registered with the ResponsibleAg Certification Program, with 1,169 facilities already receiving their certification. We encourage you to register your facilities today! For more information and to register, go to: www.responsibleag.org

Addressing Lights on Nurse Wagons

Work continues after a federal law requires manufacturers of nurse wagons to include lights on any trailer manufactured after June 2017.  Jean Payne and John Rebholz with the Illinois Fertilizer and Chemical Association (IFCA) recently made a presentation at the annual meeting of the American Society of Ag & Biological Engineers (ASABE) in Detroit to explain the issue and propose alternatives to the new requirement.  IFCA has been working with the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) and ASABE to seek more flexibility on this standard.  The presentation resulted in the formation of a small working group to come up with a resolution.  Our thanks to John Rebholz for volunteering to be on the subcommittee!  This comes with good timing as input can also be given as the group is considering requiring brakes on nurse wagons in the future.  While we are already seeing the problems of the inability to hook the light terminals up to older toolbars or when nurse tanks are pulled in combinations, the addition of brakes would greatly compound maintenance issues as these trailers are used in the field of application.

Idaho DMV Plagued by Outages

The Idaho Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV) has released a statement regarding recent outages affecting the issuance of driver’s license services in Idaho.  Statewide outages have forced sheriff-run driver’s licensing offices to close their doors while troubleshooting continues.  For now, the solution is to eliminate the dependency on the real time communication with vendor software allowing county staff to input customer information in person without having to communicate in real time with the vendor. Information will be stored on a server and then provided to the vendor at the end of the day.

Anyone with a license that is going to expire in the near future should contact the Idaho Transportation Department for a letter extending the expiration date for expiring driver’s licenses and identification cards through October 31.  Click here for more information.

EPA to Ban Chlorpyrifos

The US Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit has ordered the EPA to finalize a proposed ban on the insecticide chlorpyrifos.  The ruling gives EPA 60 days to revoke all allowable limits in food and cancel all approved uses for the pesticide.  Chlorpyrifos has been in the regulatory spotlight since 2015, when the agency proposed to ban the chemical but did not finalize the rule.  This decision will have far-reaching effects as chlorpyrifos has been used since 1965 in the US and is still commonly used on dozens of food crops, including fruits, vegetables and nuts. Nationally, it is found in products registered by about 20 different companies and sold under various brands, including Lorsban and Cobalt Advanced.

Citations Issued After Two Workers Engulfed

OSHA has cited a grain company in Kansas after two workers were fatally engulfed in a soybean storage bin.  The company faces proposed penalties of $507,374, and was placed in the Agency’s Severe Violator Enforcement Program.  Citations were issued for failing to provide employees with lifelines and fall protection: lockout equipment; provide rescue equipment; and allowing employees to enter a bin in which bridged or hung up grain was present.  “Moving grain acts like quicksand and can bury a worker in seconds,” said OSHA Regional Administrator Kimberly Stille.  “This tragedy could have been prevented if the employer had provided workers with proper safety equipment and followed required safety procedures to protect workers from grain bin hazards.”  The company has contested the citations and will appear before the independent Occupational Safety and Health Review Commission.

OSHA Redesigns Regulations Webpage

OSHA redesigned the Law and Regulations webpage that features information on standards and rulemaking.  Users can now search standards by keyword or number, find a list of key resources and see the latest updates on active rulemaking.  The page also features information buttons to explain regulatory language that may be unfamiliar to some users.  Click here to visit the revised page to learn how OSHA accomplishes its mission through rulemaking.

Experienced Applicator Training Course - Registration Now Open!

The Asmark Institute and AGCO Corporation have teamed up to offer the second new training course to help experienced applicators become the most professional applicators possible.  Not to be confused with the 4-day course for beginners, this new 2-day course is designed specifically for applicators with three or more years of experience, and is dedicated to continuing the development and education of professional applicators.  This cutting edge course is lead by Greg Yoder and Gary Cornell, who have a combined total of 90 years of experience in the field.  Both instructors started their careers as professional applicators and bring a wealth of knowledge to the course.

This course is essentially a refresher and “re-boot” experience for seasoned applicators. Over the past two decades, operators have developed skills limited to certain products such as glyphosate.  Currently, we are entering an era of prescription weed control, where every field could require a different tank mix to control pesticide-resistant weeds.  Applicators need to be armed with all the skills and knowledge possible to perform their duties as a professional applicator.  This course will cover the following topics and help provide the tools necessary to accomplish this.

Topics covered
  • Weed Identification
  • Assessing Each Field
  • Safety on the Road
  • Maintenance
  • Understanding Product Labels
  • Field Math
  • Measurements
  • Calibration - Liquid and Dry
  • New Chemistry & Challenges
  • Difference in Tank Additives
  • Drift Management Options & Strategies
  • Tank Cleanout
  • Recordkeeping
  • Tabletop Scenarios
The Experienced Applicator Training course is a very hands-on course held in a classroom filled with scenarios, demonstrations and exercises.  The 2-day course will be offered from November through March since there are no driving exercises or scenarios outdoors.  Participants will learn and build upon their experience to become proficient in the skills required of a professional applicator.  Each part of the course builds the participants knowledge-base and over the progression of the two days, creates a comprehensive thought process.  To learn more about the new course and to register, click here.

New Experienced Applicator Course - Weed Identification

To help applicators be prepared as possible we’re introducing a high-tech and hopefully fun weed identification exercise in the new Experienced Applicator Course - launching this November.  Too many times an applicator arrives at the field with their load, only to realize the weeds in the field are not the same weeds the order said they were.  If the applicator knows how to identify the weeds, then he or she can check the field to be sprayed against the order to ensure the application will be effective.  This new exercise will consist of a virtual reality headset, with a screen capable of showing 3D images of different weeds that the participants will learn to identify.  By being able to recognize and identify weeds, it adds skills to the applicator, which then adds value to the retailer and on to the farmer.

Back in the good ol’ days, when teaching applicators about weed identification, the exercise’s were limited to using potted plants, which restricted it to be seasonal.  But with this virtual reality system, it not only engages the participants, but it also adds a level of high tech with it’s realistic visuals, and convenience as it can be used any where and any time of year.  This new exercise would not be possible without the help of Chris Weed with Kova Fertilizer Inc., who came up with the idea, and  Dr. Aaron Hager with the University of Illinois, who helped make it happen, and Tyler Marlman with Asmark Institute, who programmed the VR headsets.

Containment Repair or Replace Workshop Was a Do Not Miss Event!

EHS&S professionals and State regulatory agencies from twelve states came together for a jam-packed one day workshop discussing how to evaluate cracks to determine what can be successfully repaired.  The workshop was eye-opening to say the least.  If you didn’t attend this workshop then sometime within the next three years you will regret it.  Read on for the next opportunity.

The condition of secondary containment structures is one of the hottest topics with the agency in each state that is tasked with regulating the issue.  The issue is not enough credible information around to help them - or the industry decides what actions to take in their state.  If you have concrete containment areas, then you have cracks - in what is supposed to be a water-tight structure.  Granted some are worse than others, but none are getting better as they age.  Everyone is looking for guidance on cracks and how to repair them, and if you don’t realize that yet, then you soon will.

The big takeaway from the workshop unfortunately was that only a few cracks truly lend themselves to being successfully repaired, and it all depends on whether the structure is sound, or not.  A structure that is not sound allows for both sides of the crack to move.  This movement practically eliminates any chance of a successful repair.  Sure, for the right price anything can be repaired but the expense to successfully repair a crack can reach 50-75% of the cost of a new structure.

This workshop helped define the standard going forward in our industry based on the feedback we received from the participants.  All the credit for a highly successful workshop goes to Dr. Kim Basham, PhD, PE, FACI, who is a Senior Structural Engineer with an extensive history of experience.  He specializes in structural analysis, concrete design, mix designs, concrete specifications and preconstruction, formwork, shoring and reshoring, temporary structures, mass concrete placements, concrete forensic investigations, structural evaluations, condition surveys, destructive and nondestructive testing, concrete repair, concrete construction techniques, concrete technology and research.  Dr. Basham has served as Chair of the World of Concrete (WOC) Education Advisory Committee. This committee is made up of industry experts who represent the concrete industry as a whole. Each year they prepare an unparalleled educational program covering new techniques and current issues. He currently serves as a technical consultant for the World of Concrete Education Program and also teaches several courses at WOC.

So if you are one of those people that missed this outstanding workshop (that was provided free by the Asmark Institute Inspire program) then your next chance to get up to speed on this subject will be a little pricey but is the World of Concrete Convention in Las Vegas on January 21-25, 2019.  Spending a couple thousand dollars here will almost surely save you tens of thousands of dollars somewhere in your future.  We recommend you attend two - 3-hour seminars (“TH13” and “FR14”) taught by Dr. Basham.  Click here to learn more about the World of Concrete Convention.  Tip:  Register early - as in September - if you want to attend economically and have good seats.

For those who attended the workshop - Thanks!  For the rest, we hope your concrete never cracks and that you are able to join us when we have someone special like this come in to perform one of these workshops.

National Labor Law Poster Updates

Considering the magnitude of state and federal agencies in existence today, it’s no surprise that labor laws are constantly changing.  The Federal Wage and Labor Law Institute (FWLLI) tracks these updates for us and we provide results for you.  Wondering if you need a poster update?  Click here to check for the latest Federal and/or State updates to the labor law posters.
Asmark Institute, Inc. This information is believed to be reliable by the Asmark Institute, however, because of constantly changing government regulations, interpretations and applicability or the possibility of human, mechanical or computer error, the Asmark Institute does not guarantee the information as suitable for any particular purpose.