MINNEAPOLIS, Minn —The annual Minnesota Structural Pest Management Conference (MSPM) in Minneapolis will present state pest management firms with the latest integrated pest management technologies and effective business methods.
The MSPM conference, to be held March 1, is hosted by the University of Minnesota Extension service and serves to promote the adoption of integrated pest management programs (IPM). The Department of Minnesota Agriculture and the Minnesota Pest Management Association have also collaborated as hosts to make the conference comprehensive.
Unique to this year’s conference, the breadth of IPM presentations expands to include effective customer service. Although customer service is not typically regarded as traditional pest management, entomologist Dr. Stephen Kells of the University of Minnesota acknowledges that customer service must be carefully considered in IPM.
Conference organizers recruited Phillip Cooper, president of Cooper Pest Solutions to expand on how superlative customer service is a key aspect of IPM. According to Kells, Cooper was the suggested by the National Pest Management Association (NPMA).
“I think that it is really easy to underestimate just how significant a role effective customer service plays in integrated pest management programs,” said Cooper. “Customer service is the first opportunity to properly evaluate a customer’s problem and convey crucial information, effective communication is paramount.”
Another new seminar being presented at the conference will focus on green pest management. Jeff Weier of Sprague Pest Solutions will be presenting the environmentally-focused seminar titled, “Opportunities in Green Pest Management.”
Weier hinted that his seminar would address ‘green’ practices such as minimizing the use of pesticides by avoiding temporary pest treatment solutions and adopting more permanent IPM methods. Weier’s seminar will also cover reducing the operations footprint of pest management firms and NPMA’s Green Pro certification, which designates pest management firms as environmentally friendly.
Similar to previous MSPM conferences, this meeting will ensure that all pest management firms operating in Minnesota are properly certified and licensed to operate within the state providing fumigations, treating for biting insects and other services.
The conference will also review the latest updates in pest control product technologies. In addition, pest control operators will have access to new treatment strategies for pests that will be problematic in the coming season including: bed bugs, ants, bird mites and rodents.
The depth of experts at the conference has attracted more than 850 attendees, ranging from field technicians to company owners. Conference presenters include bed bug expert Dr. Michael Potter of the University of Kentucky; rodent expert, Dr. Robert Corrigan president of RMC Pest Management; and IPM product expert Dr. Clay Scherer.
Registration is still open and more information on the conference can be found at www.ipmctoc.umn.edu.