About Paperless Fertilizer Tonnage Reporting

The existing paper-based tonnage reporting process is replete with costs, errors, and inefficiencies and is generally considered not sustainable. The Paperless Fertilizer Tonnage Reporting project is a collaborative effort by the Association of American Plant Food Control Officials, AgGateway, The Fertilizer Institute, and the Agricultural Retailers Association to create an e-business based solution to the current process.


Both agricultural companies and state governments face issues that are a result of the current paper-based reporting system. Most states require reporting using forms, each with a unique data format and varying data requirements, reporting cycles, and fees. 


Implementation of the Paperless Fertilizer Tonnage Reporting project allows companies to report fertilizer tonnage electronically using one industry standard format and thus eliminating the use of paper forms. Concurrently, the project allows states to receive tonnage report data electronically and in the format required by their state system.


AgGateway, The Fertilizer Institute, and the Agricultural Retailers Association formally adopted the goal of Paperless Fertilizer Tonnage Reporting by 2016. The goal is also endorsed by the Association of American Plant Food Control Officials.


States have welcomed the opportunity to work on the initiative, because they recognize that it will save time and improve accuracy for everyone down the line. If all states can adopt a unified process, companies that report and make payments for tonnage fees and taxes can standardize their internal procedures as well, making the sharing of information and payments a much more efficient and timely process for everyone.

Why Paperless Reporting?

Technology provides a faster more efficient and accurate method of reporting. Both Industry and States would benefit from simplification.

  • Implementation of a reporting standard across the industry will improve the process for everyone.

  • With the elimination of the current labor intensive process, states and agricultural businesses will experience significant cost and time savings.

Paperless reporting eliminates several reporting and report creation issues.

  • Multiple formats – 40+ different formats

  • Lack of consistency in data definitions from state to state.

  • High cost to generate reports – manual reporting is time consuming, labor intensive and not sustainable.


Paperless reporting helps or eliminates several report processing issues.

  • Budget constraints or reductions. “Need to do more with less”

  • Lack of consistency in companies reporting

  • Time consuming manual key-entry of data from paper forms

  • Manual processing of large quantities of reports/paper/filing

  • Hiring temporary help to key-enter data adds to cost and is error prone.

Paperless reporting helps several software development issues.

  • Now have the ability to develop a solution for more than one state and more than one company

  • Standardization allows for more accurate and timely testing and implementation

  • Offering standard solutions versus customized solutions, a strong return on investment is realized because a solution can be used for multiple clients

  • Industry software can now develop ‘tonnage reporting’ modules that generate the data and push to the states