Growsafe Advanced Certificate

Note: this certificate will be available later in 2023.

Who should do this course?

This course is for owners or managers of properties and those who make decisions about the application of agrichemicals and manage or supervise others doing agrichemical application.  This includes people working on farms, forests, orchards, vineyards and other industries where herbicides and other pesticides are used.  The course is particularly relevant to those using motorised spray application equipment.

Benefits of the course

On successful completion of a Growsafe Advanced course, you will be able to:
  • manage agrichemicals in accordance with NZS8409:2004
  • demonstrate knowledge of agrichemicals, their mode of action and use of adjuvants
  • prepare and implement a health and safety plan for a workplace using agrichemicals
  • manage your obligations under the Hazardous Substance and New Organisms Act 1996 (HSNO), the Health and Safety at Work Act 2016 and associated regulations, the Resource Management Act 1991 (RMA) and the Agricultural Compounds and Veterinary Medicines Act 1997 (ACVM Act)
  • calibrate one type of motorised equipment.

All regional plans specify that agrichemicals used in commercial operations such as farms, orchards, vineyards, forests, must be applied in accordance with NZS 8409.  Some plans also specify that supervisors or managers hold a Growsafe Applied certificate or equivalent training.

Course content

The Advanced programme consists of four modules:
  1. Knowledge of agrichemicals
  2. Key content in this module is mode of action, formulation, environmental degradation and the role of adjuvants.
  3. Knowledge of the regulatory environment
  4. This module covers core information within NZS8409 and the relevant legislation and regulations, with a focus on compliance and the safe use of agrichemicals.   Completion of a written assessment is required along with evidence from a site visit (for example, audit by quality assurance scheme).  This module includes a focus on risk assessment and management.
  5. Planning
  6. The development of a spray plan that meets industry and regulatory requirements is central to this module.  Long term strategic decisions relating to issues such as resistance and IPM are covered.
  7. Application (including calibration)
  8. A sector-specific module, this module focuses on sprayer setup and calibration to ensure effective use of agrichemicals.
The first module is available as an e-learning package.  Others are a combination of e-learning and face-to-face courses and practical exercises.


On successful completion of the theory and practical requirements for each module you will be awarded a Module Certificate and when all four modules are complete, you will be awarded the Growsafe Advanced certificate, with an endorsement for the sector you work in.  Depending on your trainer, you may also have achieved relevant unit standards, such as 15189, 21558, 21560, 21565.


The Growsafe Standard (or Introductory) certificate is a prerequisite for this course.  The Growsafe Theory certificate is also acceptable.  It is also expected that candidates will have at least one year's experience managing pests in the specific sector they are seeking certification prior to commencing the course.

Expiry of certificate and renewal

A Growsafe Advanced Certificate is valid for 5 years, at which time it must be renewed.  This is because laws, technology and best practice are constantly changing.  While you can read and hear about these changes yourself, your customers and the regulators require evidence that you are up-to-date.  Renewal of your certificate must be done within 6 months of expiry. Your Certified Handler certificate can be renewed at the same time (if required).  In order to renew the certificate, an individual must undertake both theory and practical assessments.

  • Either participate in an ongoing programme of industry training (recorded through the progressive recertification scheme), or
  • Attend a Growsafe recognised renewal course and complete a written assessment
  • Either undergo a one-off site visit by a Growsafe Advanced accredited trainer, or
  • Undergo a site visit as part of a quality assurance programme such as GAP or SWINZ.

Getting started on Advanced training

Contact us at to express your interest in doing this course when it becomes available.