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Producer Certification

How do you certify your field as Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage (NWSFF)?

  • Field inspections must be completed within 7 days prior to cutting your hay or within 14 days of  harvesting a grain field for straw.  A field must be inspected before you cut or harvest and for each cutting of hay. Click here for an interactive map to find an inspector near you.
  • Pay a $4.50/acre fee for each acre inspected or $45.00 for a field that is 10 acres or less.
  • Use one of the approved NWSFF markers on your hay/forage product, which include:small square baler twine 170 and 210
    1. Colored twine (blue and orange), only one strand of colored twine is required per bale.  Types of twine: 
      1. Round baler:  140/20,000 ($50/box),
      2. Small square baler:  170/9600 or 210/9600 ($50/box or banded rolls), and
      3. Big square baler: 400/4000 ($40/roll - 2 rolls required to complete one strand).
    2. Tags ($50/bag – 100 tags/bag) are required on every bale of hay/straw that is sold.
  • Complete a transportation certificate for the forage product sold. It is the responsibility of each producer to make sure that all certified NWSFF sold under the program is properly labeled and identified with transportation certificates before it leaves the premises.
  • A field can also be regionally certified if the field meets the North American Standards for being weed free, which includes additional weed species, such as quackgrass, musk thistle, and wild oats, which the field will be inspected for in addition to the Montana list of noxious weeds. Once a field is regionally certified then that forage can be used out-of-state.
  • Fields that appear weedy or show poor crop practices, even though noxious weeds are not present, will not be NWSFF certified. An example of this is a field with excessive tumble mustard, kochia, Western salsify, etc.