Preparing to take the American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists (ARPAS) Feed Management Dairy Certification Exam


This fact sheet has been developed to support the implementation of the Natural Resources Conservation Service Feed Management 592 Practice Standard. The Feed Management 592 Practice Standard was adopted by NRCS in 2003 as another tool to assist with addressing resource concerns on livestock and poultry operations. Feed management can assist with reducing the import of nutrients to the farm and reduce the excretion of nutrients in manure.

During the early 2000’s the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and the American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists (ARPAS) developed a memorandum of understanding “that provides an opportunity for qualified ARPAS members to become Technical Service Providers for NRCS programs in the category of Feed Management”. Put simply, this means that consulting nutritionists are the most appropriate advisors to develop and implement a Feed Management Plan.

Please check this link first if you are interested in organic or specialty dairy production

The NRCS Feed Management 592 Practice Standard

The NRCS Feed Management Practice Standard is defined as “managing the quantity of available nutrients fed to livestock and poultry for their intended purpose”. The purposes of the 592 standard are:

  • supply the quantity of available nutrients required by livestock and poultry for maintenance, production, performance, and reproduction; while reducing the quantity of nutrients, especially nitrogen and phosphorus, excreted in manure by minimizing the over-feeding of these and other nutrients, and
  • improve net farm income by feeding nutrients more efficiently.

The ultimate goal of utilizing the Feed Management Practice Standard 592 is to develop a farm specific Feed Management Plan.

Becoming a Certified Nutritionist to Develop a Feed Management Plan

Information about becoming certified can be accessed at ARPAS Technical Service Provider Program. In addition, the process is described in a companion fact sheet entitled “Becoming A Certified Nutritionist to Develop a Feed Management Plan – Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Feed Management Practice Standard 592”.

Preparing to take the ARPAS Feed Management Exam

The National Feed Management Education project has collaborated with ARPAS to develop a Feed Management certification exam for each species of beef, dairy, poultry and swine.

In the exam consists of 75% of the questions cover the general topic of feed management and 25% are species specific feed management questions.

Feed Management Workshop

The preparation process for taking the ARPAS Dairy Feed Management exam should begin with attending a Feed Management Workshop to gain knowledge in the process of development and implementation of a feed management plan.

Curriculum and Written Resources

The primary source of written material in support of adoption of Feed Management 592 Practice Standard can be found at Feed Management Publications. A series of fact sheets have been developed to assist with an understanding of the intent of Feed Management 592 Standard, assessment and development checklists, and writing of a Feed Management Plan.

In addition to these fact sheets, developed by the National Feed Management project partners, additional information about feed management can be found at the following websites:

  1. Livestock & Poultry Environmental Learning Community, scroll down and click on Feed Management.
  2. Livestock & Poultry Environmental Stewardship Curriculum
  3. Nitrogen Management on Dairy Farms

“Extension programs and policies are consistent with federal and state laws and regulations on nondiscrimination regarding race, sex, religion, age, color, creed, national or ethnic origin; physical, mental or sensory disability; marital status, sexual orientation, or status as a Vietnam-era or disabled veteran. Evidence of noncompliance may be reported through your local Extension office.”


This fact sheet reflects the best available information on the topic as of the publication date. Date 5-26-2007

This Feed Management Education Project was funded by the USDA NRCS CIG program. Additional information can be found at Feed Management Publications.

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This project is affiliated with the LPELC.


Project Information

Detailed information about training and certification in Feed Management can be obtained from Joe Harrison, Project Leader,, or Becca White, Project Manager,

Author Information

J. H. Harrison jhharrison@wsu.eduand R. A. White, Washington State University
R. Shaver, University of Wisconsin
L. Chase, Cornell University
Glenn Carpenter, Natural Resources Conservation Service