Registrations for 2019 Waste Pesticide Disposal are now closed. Please check back in 2020 for new disposal collection event dates, locations and registration information.

Waste Pesticide Disposal Program

Collection Schedule:

Check back in 2020 for future waste pesticide collection dates and locations.

All licensed pesticide applicators within districts where waste disposal collections are scheduled for 2020 will receive information and pre-registration forms by mail in July 2020. Other interested parties (unlicensed pesticide applicators, members of the general public) should refer to this web page for more information as it is available, or contact the department or MSU county extension agents.

For small-scale users, the program is free. The legislation authorizing the collection program was sponsored by Montana's agricultural industry and is funded, in part, by license fees that private, commercial, and government pesticide applicators and pesticide dealers pay to become licensed. Registration for the program is requested by the end of August. For the most part, acceptance into the program is on a first-come, first-served basis and early sign-up is encouraged.

Annual pesticide collections began in 1994. More than 638,600 pounds of waste pesticide have been collected from more than 1,764 participants. Amounts collected have ranged from one pound to over 7,000 pounds. Common pesticides that have been brought to collection events include insecticides such as DDT, chlordane, and pentachlorophenol and herbicides like 2,4,5-T and dinoseb. Strychnine has been the primary rodenticide collected.

Participants must pre-register their unusable pesticide with the Montana Department of Agriculture before the collection event so the collection can be managed safely and efficiently. Cost for participating in the program is substantially lower than costs incurred through other disposal options.

Important Change: As of May 2017, licensed pesticide applicators and dealers no longer receive a fee credit for that portion of the license fee earmarked for the disposal program.

Licensed pesticide applicators and dealers receive a fee credit for that portion of their license fee earmarked for the disposal program.


Disposal Cost

The disposal fee is FREE for the first 200 pounds and $1.00/lb for amounts in excess of 200 pounds, with a minimum charge of $5.00. Products are weighed on site. The disposal fee for pesticides containing dioxins or dioxin precursors may have a higher fee.

Requirements: Participants must pre-register their unusable pesticide with the Montana Department of Agriculture so the collection can be managed safely and efficiently. The registration form will be available here in 2020.

Materials Accepted for Disposal

  • Pesticides
  • Pesticide mixes
  • Unknown pesticides
  • Metal pesticide containers

Disposal is free for the first 200 pounds and $1.00 per pound for additional amounts. Fees to dispose of pesticides containing dioxins may be higher.

Not Accepted for Disposal

  • Non-pesticide materials
  • Plastic containers
  • Fertilizers
  • Loaded M-44 predator baits
  • Fumigant gases
  • Solvents
  • Paints
  • Oil

When and Where

Locations and Dates for the 2019 Collection:

  • Collections will be held September 17-20, 2019.
  • Locations are Wolf Point on Sept. 17; Sidney on Sept. 18; Miles City on Sept. 19; Billings on Sept. 20.
Map: Montana Department of Agriculture Waste Pesticide Disposal Districts (Western, Central, and Eastern)

In 2019, waste pesticide disposal will occur in District 3. In 2020 waste pesticide disposal will occur in District 1, and in 2021 it will occur in District 2.

All licensed pesticide applicators within the district will receive information and registration forms by mail in July.

Unlicensed applicators can obtain registration forms from the department or from MSU County Extension Agents.

Transportation Safety Tips

Inspect all unwanted pesticides to see that they are securely packaged

Only transport containers that are secure. If the container is questionable, carefully pack within another container for transport.

Line storage area of transport vehicle with plastic

Do not transport pesticides in areas occupied by passengers. If at all possible transport to the site in the back of a pickup or alternately in the trunk of a car. Avoid exposure to humans and animals.

Carry absorbent material

If you are transporting liquid materials carry absorbent materials such as kitty litter in case of breakage or spillage.

Arrange pesticides by hazard classification

Arrange pesticides such as corrosives, flammable, oxidizers, poisons, etc. to prevent mixing of incompatible materials should spillage occur.

Brace containers in vehicle

This will prevent unnecessary shifting which could result in container damage and leakage.

Keep all containers covered during transport

Loads hauled in an open pickup truck should be covered.

Certificate of participation

A copy of this form, which lists the pesticides authorized for disposal, must be maintained in the vehicle when transporting pesticide to the collection site (in case of accident, emergency responders will need to know what they are dealing with). Please present this form at the time of unloading.

Please drive carefully

You are responsible for any spillage, damage, subsequent cleanup and restoration that might occur while you are transporting the unwanted pesticides. The state and its contractors are not responsible for any spillage that occurs before the unwanted pesticides are accepted for transport at the collection site.

Drive directly to the pesticide collection site

After you load your vehicle, avoid unnecessary travel when transporting pesticides.

Direct additional safety questions to the Montana Department of Agriculture

Refer to the contact information on this page.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Montana Department of Agriculture Waste Pesticide Collection & Disposal Program?

A program sponsored by the Montana Department of Agriculture that collects and properly disposes of waste pesticides and metal pesticide containers. For most participants the program is free. Participants with more than 200 pounds of waste pesticides are charged a subsidized rate for disposal of the extra material.

What are waste pesticides?

Any pesticide product that the owner cannot or does not wish to use is a waste pesticide, and is a suitable candidate for the disposal program.

Who has the responsibility for proper disposal of pesticides?

In most cases, the person, company or organization that purchases or controls a pesticide is legally responsible for its proper use, handling, storage, and disposal. For more information contact the Montana Department of Agriculture. It is illegal to bury, burn, or discard a pesticide or its container in a manner inconsistent with instructions found on the label. The disposal program is the easiest, safest, and usually the only legal option for proper disposal of these materials.

How do I know if a pesticide is no longer usable?

Pesticides may become unusable for many reasons, even simply because the person possessing them no longer has a use for them. Some products have a limited shelf life, or may undergo changes in storage that render them unusable. Identifying labels and use directions deteriorate with age, often to the point of becoming unreadable or completely missing. Many liquid products become unusable after being frozen, for example, and many dry formulations like dusts or granules may become unusable if they get wet. In some cases pesticides become unusable because their registrations are expired or canceled, and legal uses for them no longer exist. It is also not uncommon for people who inherit or purchase agricultural properties to find unusable pesticides in storage. All of these circumstances make pesticides unusable, and all of these examples are suitable for the MDA disposal program. If you have questions about the use, status or condition of a pesticide, contact the Montana Department of Agriculture at (406)-444-5400. It is helpful, but not necessary for participation, to provide the product's name, manufacturer, and U.S. EPA registration number found on the product's label.

How are waste pesticides properly disposed?

Because of the inherent hazards associated with most unusable pesticides, disposal at a permitted hazardous waste facility is the only acceptable and legal disposal practice. The Montana Department of Agriculture contracts with a licensed hazardous waste company to collect and properly dispose of waste pesticides. One collection per year will take place in one of the three waste pesticide disposal districts in the state of Montana. For more information, refer to the When and Where section on this page.

How does the Montana Department of Agriculture Waste Pesticide Collection Program work?

The basic process for the Montana Department of Agriculture Waste Pesticide Collection Program goes like this:

  • The participant pre-registers unusable pesticides and empty metal pesticide containers with the Montana Department of Agriculture
  • The participant or the participant's designee brings the pre-registered pesticide to the collection site. During transportation the material is legally considered an ordinary pesticide. It is not yet hazardous waste.
  • Upon arrival at the site, the pesticide is turned over to a licensed hazardous waste contractor. The pesticide become hazardous waste at that point, and the contractor assumes ownership and liability.
  • The contractor packages the material for transportation, hauls it away, and properly disposes of it.

Who is eligible to participate, and how much does it cost?

The program serves all the citizens of Montana. Although licensed pesticide applicators are the program's primary clientele, anyone with waste pesticides may apply. Cost to the participant is based on the weight of the waste pesticide and its container. Products are weighed on site at the time of transfer.

  • The first 200 lbs are FREE.
  • $1.00 per pound for additional amounts over 200 pounds, with a $5.00 minimum.
  • The department may elect to accept pesticides that contain dioxin or heavy metals into the program at a higher fee.

What materials are eligible and ineligible for collection?

The program will collect and dispose of most unusable pesticides and metal pesticide containers. Empty plastic pesticide containers, fertilizers, waste oil, paints and any other non-pesticide material will not be accepted.

What about pesticides with a missing label or unknown pesticides?

Pesticides with a missing label or unknown pesticides can be accepted into the disposal program. In most cases, the hazardous waste contractor can characterize the waste at the collection site. Large volumes of an unknown pesticide may require analysis before acceptance into the collection. Contact the Montana Department of Agriculture for more information if you have a large quantity of an unknown product. The participant should be reasonably sure that the unknown material is a pesticide. Any information about the material should be provided.

When will there be a collection in my area?

In 2019 - District 3 (Eastern Montana); 2020 - District 1 (Western Montana).

What are the steps to participate in the collection program?

Contact the Montana Department of Agriculture at 465-0531 The Department may set priorities for the type and amount of pesticides collected under the disposal program based on funding.

What can be done about empty pesticide containers?

The Montana Department of Agriculture also provides a free container-recycling program. Containers are picked up at the dealer or applicator location several times throughout the growing season. Please contact Carli Davis at (406) 465-0531, Carli.Davis@mt.gov for more information, or to be put on the collection route. The first and most important step is to RINSE CONTAINERS CLEAN AT THE TIME OF USE. Rinsate should be added to the spray tank so that no waste is generated and so that you get the benefit of every drop of the product you paid for. Recycling is the preferred option for the clean containers, but after being triple or pressure rinsed they can also be legally disposed of in a solid waste landfill.

  • Metal pesticide containers that have not been properly rinsed can be accepted as waste.
  • Empty plastic pesticide containers will not be accepted by this program.

Are the program participants no longer liable once the pesticide has been accepted by the disposal program?

Yes, program participants are relieved of future liability going forward when the product is delivered to the contractor. At that point the disposal contractor becomes the hazardous waste generator and owns both the waste and the liability. All pesticides accepted into the program are incinerated at an EPA- licensed facility to reduce possible future pollution liability.

Will the Department use my participation in the program as a means to prosecute for illegal management of pesticides?

No. The Montana Code Annotated (MCA) 80-8-111 specifies that a person may not be subject to an administrative or judicial penalty or action as a result of participation in the disposal program. The point of the program, after all, is to reduce the risk of harm to human health and the environment by encouraging proper and responsible disposal of unusable and waste pesticides.

Pesticide Waste Disposal News

Public Meeting Notice: Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council Business Meeting & Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Hearings

March 2 - 6, 2020 in Helena, MT

Public Meeting Notice: Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council Business Meeting & Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Hearings

The Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council will meet from March 2 - 6, 2020 at the Great Northern Hotel (835 Great Northern Blvd.) in Helena, Montana.  The Noxious Weed Trust Fund Grant Hearings will take place during this time.  An agenda will be posted soon.

Click to learn more about the Noxious Weed Trust Fund.

2020 Montana Water Summit - "At the Confluence of Land and Water"

March 2 - 4, 2020 in Helena, MT

2020 Montana Water Summit - "At the Confluence of Land and Water"

The goal of the Montana Water Summit is to provide information, spur discussion and explore solutions in a statewide forum to help Montanans address critical tensions at the nexus of land and water planning, management and policy.

Click to learn more and register for the summit.

Conference Location:
Delta Hotels Helena Colonial
2301 Colonial Drive
HELENA, MT 59601

Phone: 406-443-2100

Main Contact:
Ann Schwend
Phone: 406-444-1806
Email: aschwend@mt.gov

Documents to download


EPA announces a more protective interim decision on sodium cyanide, the compound used in M-44 devices to control certain wild predators


This week, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced a more protective interim decision on sodium cyanide, the compound used in M-44 devices to control certain wild predators, primarily coyotes, as part of the re-registration review process required by the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act. After a careful review of the available information and extensive engagement with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), EPA is issuing a revised interim decision on sodium cyanide that includes new requirements to ensure continued safe use of the device. The agency’s new requirements enhance protections by adding increased distances for device placement.

Click to read the article published by Northern Ag Network

Carli Davis
Pesticide Disposal and Container Recycling Programs

Phone : (406) 465-0531
Email : Carli.Davis@mt.gov
54 East Larslan Rd
Larslan, MT 59244