Commercial Animal Feed License Details & FAQ
December 31st of each year
$25.00 license fee is required for all or any part of each calendar year. Additionally, there is a tonnage-based inspection fee of $0.13 for each ton of feed manufactured or distributed in Michigan.
Lorelei Curry, Phone: 517-241-0929
Commercial Feed Manufacturer/Distributor License
Commercial manufacturers and distributors of materials intended to be used as animal feeds, including livestock feeds, pet foods, ingredients, and nutritional supplements, must be licensed in the state of Michigan. This page is intended to give you a basic description of these requirements.
Who Needs a License?
A commercial feed license must be obtained by anyone who intends to manufacture or distribute commercial feed in Michigan.
Commercial feeds include, but are not limited to, feed ingredients, complete and concentrated feeds, feed premixes, and nutritional supplements for livestock, zoo and laboratory animals, wildlife (wild birds, squirrels, deer, etc.), and domesticated pets (unless normally kept in cages or tanks).
A distributor is not required to obtain a license to distribute a brand or product if the manufacturer is already licensed and the name and principal mailing address of the manufacturer appear on the label.
The principal mailing address shall include the street address, city, state and zip code; however, the street address may be omitted if it is shown in the current city directory or telephone directory.
What fees are required in order to Manufacture or Distribute Commercial Feed in Michigan?
A $25.00 license fee is required for all or any part of each calendar year.
In addition to the annual license fee, all license holders are required to report the number of tons of feed manufactured or distributed in Michigan and to pay a tonnage-based inspection fee of 13¢ for each ton of that feed.
How Do I apply for a New Commercial Feed License?
If you have not applied for a Commercial Feed License before, the process is easy if you follow this simple process:
- Make sure that you have prepared labels for all of the products you will be marketing (see: Animal Feed Label Requirements).
- Download and print a copy of the Commercial Feed License Application.
- Complete the Commercial Feed License application.
- Attach labels for all products.
- Attach $25.00 check or money order made payable to the State of Michigan.
- Mail entire package to:
Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development
Central Licensing Unit
P.O. Box 30017
Lansing, Michigan 48909
All first-time license applicants must submit copies of their product labels with the application. Labels that are found to be misleading or in other respects not in compliance with the regulations may cause the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development (MDARD) to refuse issuance of your license. Due to the volume of labels received, it is not unusual for MDARD to issue a license prior to a review of your labels. If this happens and labels are found to be in violation during subsequent inspection and review, regulatory action may still be taken at that time.
How Long Does It Take To Process My First-Time Application?
License applications are processed in the order in which they are received. The typical "error-free" application should normally be processed within 4 weeks. If submitted during "renewal" season (December-January) it could take 6-8 weeks due to the volume of applications being received at that time. PLAN AHEAD!
Processing may take considerably longer if your application is incomplete for any of the following reasons:
- If the application is received without the license fee ? The entire application will be returned and will not be processed.
- If the owner or other responsible individual did not sign the application - A copy of the application will be returned to the sender and will not be processed until returned to MDARD with the required signature.
- If the required labels do not accompany the application, MDARD will send a letter to the applicant requesting the labels. The application will not be processed until the labels are received.
- If portions of the application form have been left blank - A copy of the application will be returned to the sender with the blank fields marked. The application will not be processed until the form has been completed in its entirety, and returned.
Note: Applications that have to be returned will lose their position in the processing order.
If We Have Sent in an Application, When Can We Begin Manufacturing and Distributing Feed?
You may only begin once MDARD has issued your license. Because applications that we receive may be incomplete or contain errors, it is not appropriate for MDARD to issue a license until the deficiencies have been corrected.
If A License Has Been Issued To My Company, Does That Mean My Labels Have Been Approved?
No. It is not possible for us to review all of the labels for all of the feeds being distributed in Michigan, and not all of the labels that we see receive a complete review. Your license does not entitle you to distribute feeds that fail to meet the requirements of Michigan's Commercial Feed Law. You will be notified if any review performed after your license has been issued reveals product or label violations.
When Do Commercial Feed Licenses Expire?
Commercial Feed Manufacturer/Distributor Licenses expire on December 31st and must be renewed on a yearly basis.
How Do I renew my Commercial Feed License?
A renewal application will be mailed to all licensed firms by the end of November. Complete the Commercial Feed License Application that was sent to you and mail it along with the $25.00 renewal application fee to MDARD. MDARD requests that you use the renewal application sent to you in the mail because it will contain your license number and specific company information such as company name and address as previously submitted to MDARD. If any of that information has changed since the previous license, indicating the changes on this form will help us to update our records.
Changes can be made directly on the application by crossing out the incorrect information and writing in the corrected information. Licensees who have not received their application by December 15th should immediately contact MDARD at (517) 241-0929 or send an email to Lorelei Curry.
Is There Anything I Can Do To Avoid Having My License Renewal Delayed?
As with first-time applications, your renewal could be delayed for any of the following reasons:
- Believe it or not, some companies send checks for payment without an application. MDARD collects fees for many different types of licenses and fees. Any funds that are sent to MDARD are received initially by the department's finance office. The type of application accompanying the funds tells the cashier which of several divisions or programs to forward the materials to. If there is no application, the money may be credited to the wrong place. If the feed section does happen to receive a copy of the check, we still have to send a letter to the firm requesting an application before we can do anything further.
- If the application is received without the license fee, the entire application will be returned and will not be processed.
- If the owner or other responsible individual did not sign the application, a copy of the application will be returned to the sender and will not be processed until returned to MDARD with the required signature.
- If portions of the application form have been left blank, a copy of the application will be returned to the sender with the blank fields marked. The application will not be processed until the form has been completed in its entirety, and returned.
Note: Applications that have to be returned will lose their position in the processing order.
MDARD does not request that labels be submitted with license renewal applications. However, it does reserve the right to request labels from a company at any time to determine compliance with current requirements.
What Should I expect if there is a Violation Notice?
Any person who receives a violation notice for manufacturing or distributing commercial feed without a license will be expected to apply for a license for the calendar year in which the violation notice was issued. That license will need to be renewed as of January 1st in order to be in compliance.
What Should I do if there are Changes in Company Ownership, Name, or Address?
Commercial Feed Licenses are issued to a particular company and its controlling interests. If the ownership or other type of control of the company changes, the license does not transfer. The license becomes invalid upon the change in ownership. When such a change occurs, the new owner, partnership, corporation, etc. must immediately submit an application and fee for a new license. If the change also involves a change in the company name, its business address, or both, MDARD will allow the company, under the new license, to use its old labels for up to six months following the actual date of the change. At the end of this six-month grace period, all labels in distribution must reflect the revised name and/or address of the company.
Placing stickers over the old name and/or address on the labels is allowed.
If a company changes either its business name or the address under which it is licensed, but remains under the same ownership, it needs to immediately send written notification to MDARD so that the license and related records can be updated accordingly. You will receive acknowledgement that the changes have been made and MDARD will then permit the company to use its old labels for up to six months following the actual date of the change. At the end of this six-month grace period, all labels in distribution must reflect the revised name and/or address.
Note: Placing stickers over the old name and/or address on the labels is allowed. Your renewal application for the subsequent license year should reflect the changes that you submitted.