ACUP and chemical user courses - the difference
People sometimes get confused about the relationship between an Agricultural Chemical User Permit (ACUP) and chemical user training courses. This fact sheet explains the differences between the ACUP and chemical user training courses, and what each is used for.
ACUPs and ‘restricted use’ chemicals
An ACUP is a permit issued by the Department of Primary Industries (DPI) under the Agricultural and Veterinary Chemicals (Control of Use) Act 1992 that authorises the holder to use ‘restricted use’ chemicals in Victoria.
Figure 1. Standard ACUP
‘Restricted use’ chemicals are Schedule 7 Poisons (DANGEROUS POISONS), formulations of atrazine and metham sodium, and ester formulations of 2,4-D, 2,4-DB, MCPA or triclopyr.
An ACUP is also required to use agricultural chemical products that contain 1080 (sodium fluoroacetate), gaseous methyl bromide, chloropicrin or phosphine for fumigation, or pindone concentrate for the preparation of poison baits.
To use these chemicals the user must either hold an ACUP or be working under the direct and immediate supervision of an ACUP holder (i.e. within sight and sound).
Figure 1 shows the current standard ACUP that authorises the use of the ‘restricted use’ chemicals listed above. There are a number of different colour-coded ACUPs for each of the different ‘restricted use’ chemical combinations.
While the current ACUP is a wallet sized plastic card, there are still many ACUP holders who have the older style, A5 sized pink paper ACUP. Paper ACUPs remain valid and there is no need for them to be replaced prior to their expiry.
ACUPs and ‘restricted supply’ chemicals
An ACUP is also required to purchase ‘restricted supply’ products. At the moment, most commonly used ‘restricted supply’ products in Victoria are endosulfan products, mevinphos (Phosdrin Insecticide®) and all 1080 pest animal bait products used for vertebrate pest control. There are approximately 20,000 Victorian chemical users who hold an ACUP that authorises supply of these chemicals.
Chemical user training
Figure 2. AusChem Certificate
In Victoria, the AusChem Victoria (previously ChemCert Victoria) Agvet Chemical User Training Program is the most common training course completed by chemical users. Over 60,000 people have participated in this training course since its inception in 1989.
Figure 2 (overleaf) is the current AusChem Victoria certificate issued upon successful completion of the course. For some time a few years ago wallet-sized cards were issued, but these had the same status as the course certificate.
The AusChem Victoria course is just one of the available chemical user training courses that form the pre-requisite training in safe chemical use that once completed, allows a person to apply for an ACUP.
A chemical user training course certificate or card does not authorise the supply of ‘restricted supply’ chemicals, or the use of ‘restricted use’ chemicals – it is simply the training pre-requisite that must be completed to apply for an ACUP.
Once granted, an ACUP is valid for 10 years. To re-apply for an ACUP upon expiry, permit holders must send a completed application form, a copy of their course certificate, and the renewal fee to the ACUP Registrar, whose details are provided on the ACUP application form.
While DPI does not require the mandatory completion of refresher training in order to renew an ACUP, DPI does encourage chemical users to keep up-to-date with changes in technology, current practices and regulations.
A chemical user training course is purely the training pre-requisite required for DPI to issue an
ACUP, whereas an ACUP authorises the supply of ‘restricted supply' chemicals, and the use of ‘restricted use’ chemicals in Victoria.
DPI Chemical Standards Officers
|David Rumbold||(03) 5430 4806|
|Jo Robinson||(03) 5355 0522|
|Alex Perera||(03) 5430 4591|
|Steve Field||(03) 5824 5532|
|Neil Harrison||(03) 5336 6616|
|Jane Rhodes||(03) 5147 0832|
Published and Authorised by:
Department of Environment and Primary Industries
1 Spring Street
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