How is fertiliser use managed?
Fertiliser use is managed on an individual farm basis and in some cases even individual paddocks. To do this the farmer receives assistance from fertiliser company field staff or independent consultants. All field staff from The Fertiliser Association's member companies undertake a process for accreditation as nutrient management advisers. To achieve this they need to have an appropriate qualification, engage in a comprehensive in-house training and mentoring program and successfully complete both post graduate training courses in intermediate and advanced sustainable nutrient management at Massey University.
The Code of Practice for Nutrient Management ensures a consistent industry standard is provided for when undertaking nutrient management. This Code contains nutrient management planning templates to assist farmers and advisers in planning, implementing and recording best practice within the concept of the whole farm system.
Industry Quality Assurance (QA) schemes, which include fertiliser use, apply to agricultural and horticultural industries and these schemes require adoption of best practice, with supporting records.
Regional councils also require evidence of responsible use of nutrients in farming systems. Permitted and controlled activity rules apply as a legal requirement of the regional council regional plans. The Code of Practice for Fertiliser Use (a precursor to The Code of Practice for Nutrient Management) is included in many regional plans. It helps farmers to comply with best practice and provides a recognised industry standard for the responsible use and management of fertilisers and nutrients.