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The Montana Department of Agriculture manages more than 30 programs, from marketing and business development to licensing and regulating activities to protecting agricultural producers, consumers and the environment. Explore our featured programs below, or use the main menu to browse all MDA programs and services.


UNSOLICITED SEED PACKAGES REPORTING

The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) has received multiple reports from Montana residents that have received unsolicited packages containing seeds that appear to have been shipped from China. MDA is working with USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service to safely identify and dispose of the mailed materials. 

*If you have received an unsolicited package of seeds:

SM Unsolicited Seed MT Dos637315789210598976

  • Mail the seed package, including the original mail label if possible, to:

Montana Department of Agriculture
Attn: Seed Program
PO Box 200201 
Helena, MT 59620-0201

*Please be advised, you may open your packages sent through the mail per usual. If the contents include seeds that you did not order, please do not open the package containing the seeds and follow the steps shown above.

Please remember to always buy from licensed seed dealers

The department's Seed Program provides licenses to seed dealers in Montana in order to assure consumers that seed offered for sale in Montana are truthfully labeled for identity, purity and viability. To search licensed seed dealers, visit mtplants.mt.gov.

Related Links:


COVID-19 RESPONSE

WorkingFromHome

In order to better protect our staff and the public, most of the Montana Department of Agriculture’s staff are currently working from home, but can still be reached during normal business hours. We are conducting in-person business by appointment only. Per the Governor's Directivemasks or face coverings are required for individuals ages five and older in counties with four or more confirmed and active cases of COVID-19.

In order to streamline your request, please consider using the “I want To” tab to find out who to contact directly, view our staff directory, or email your question to agr@mt.gov. In addition, the department has canceled all scheduled pesticide recertification trainings until further notice. Please continue to check back to this website for further information as it is available.

The latest COVID-19 information and resources are available at https://covid19.mt.gov/. Please call 1-888-333-0461 or email covid19info@mt.gov.

Click to view Interim Guidance from the CDC and US Dept. of Labor for Agricultural Workers and Employers. More information related to COVID-19 is available here.


CORONAVIRUS RELIEF FUND

Montana Coronavirus Relief Fund

Montanans in every corner of the state have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. As Montana works to recover from the unprecedented economic situation caused by this novel Coronavirus, the state is making emergency financial relief available from the federal government to those who have been hardest-hit by impacts of COVID-19 through a single application portal on this website.


Montana Meat Processing Infrastructure Grant Program

Click to view list of award recipients

The Montana Meat Processing Infrastructure Grant program was created to aid small and medium-sized meat processors in responding to the COVID-19 crisis through the adaptation and advancement of meat processing infrastructure and capacity in Montana.

Application period is closed.


Montana Agriculture Adaptability Program 

Click to view list of award recipients

The Montana Food and Agriculture Market Adaptability Program (MTFAAP) was created to aid small and medium-sized food and agriculture businesses in responding to the COVID-19 crisis through business adaptation and diversification.

Application period is closed.


In the Spotlight...

Public Meeting (Via Zoom): MT Oilseed Advisory Committee

September 8, 2020 at 10:00 a.m.

Public Meeting (Via Zoom): MT Oilseed Advisory Committee

The Montana Oilseed Advisory Commmittee will meet via Zoom at 10:00 a.m. on Tuesday, September 8, 2020

 

Zoom Meeting Info:

To join using a computer:  https://mt-gov.zoom.us/j/94801685895?pwd=bk8xcjNEcVdxNlFObkI4d0dmZHYyZz09

To join by phone: +1 646 558 8656 or +1 406 444 9999; Meeting ID: 948 0168 5895; Password: 145405

 

For more information, please call (406) 444-2402 or email danielle.jones@mt.gov

Governor Bullock Announces over $7.5 Million of Coronavirus Relief Funds Awarded through Montana Meat Processing Infrastructure Grants

Bullock, MDA award grants to over 60 businesses for meat processing

Governor Bullock Announces over $7.5 Million of Coronavirus Relief Funds Awarded through Montana Meat Processing Infrastructure Grants

MONTANA – Governor Steve Bullock and the Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) today announced that over $7.5 million in grant funding has been awarded through the Montana Meat Processing Infrastructure Grant (MMPIG) programs. The grants are designed to aid small and medium-sized meat processors in responding to the COVID-19 crisis through the adaptation and advancement of meat processing infrastructure and capacity in Montana.

 

“The impacts of COVID-19 have highlighted how fragile the nation’s supply chain can be, especially when it comes to meat processing,” said Governor Steve Bullock. “It’s crucial that our producers have viable options for getting their meat to market. Investing in meat processing infrastructure will help our Montana producers, strengthen local food systems, and bolster food security for Montanans in communities across the state from Plains to Circle.”

Click to view the list of recipients

FDA Investigates Outbreak of Salmonella Newport: Red Onions (July 2020)

Do not eat, sell, or serve onions from Thomson International, Inc.

FDA Investigates Outbreak of Salmonella Newport: Red Onions (July 2020)

The FDA, along with CDC and state and local partners, is investigating a multistate outbreak of Salmonella Newport infections. FDA’s traceback investigation is ongoing but has identified Thomson International, Inc. of Bakersfield, CA as a likely source of potentially contaminated red onions. Although the investigation has determined that red onions are the likely source of this outbreak, Thomson International, Inc. has notified FDA that it will be recalling all varieties of onions that could have come in contact with potentially contaminated red onions, due to the risk of cross-contamination. This recall would include red, white, yellow, and sweet onions from Thomson International, Inc. Recall information will be made public as soon as it is available from Thomson International, Inc.

Click to learn more and see recommendations.

Click to view map of reported cases.

USDA Investigates Packages of Unsolicited Seeds from China

USDA Investigates Packages of Unsolicited Seeds from China

USDA is aware that people across the country have received suspicious, unsolicited packages of seed that appear to be coming from China. USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is working closely with the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection, other federal agencies, and State departments of agriculture to investigate the situation.

MDA Asks Public to Report Receipt of any Unsolicited Packages of Seeds

Call (406) 444-3950 to report unsolicited seed packages

MDA Asks Public to Report Receipt of any Unsolicited Packages of Seeds


 Helena, Mont. – The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) has received multiple reports from Montana residents that have received unsolicited packages containing seeds that appear to have been shipped from China. Individuals are urged to contact the department if they receive a package matching this description. Please contact the Seed Program at (406) 444-3950 or bballensky@mt.gov.  
 

Documents to download

ARM Public Hearing Notice: Montana Hemp Research and Market Development Program (4-20-269)

Conference Call - Thursday, August 13, 2020, 1:00pm

A public hearing will be held on August 13, 2020 at 1:00 p.m. The Montana Department of Agriculture has proposed administrative rules pertaining to the Montana Hemp Research and Market Development Program. The proposal notice, published on pages 1319-1321 in Issue No. 14 of the 2020 Montana Administrative Register (MAR Notice No. 4-20-269) can be viewed on the Secretary of State’s website at https://sosmt.gov/arm/register/.

The hearing will be held in in Room 225 of the Scott Hart Building (302 N. Roberts, Helena, MT 59601), as well as virtually through the meeting platform Zoom. Concerned persons may submit their data, views, or arguments either orally or in writing at the hearing or send them to the department by 5:00 p.m., August 21, 2020.

For Zoom meeting details please contact Virginia Corbett via email at agr@mt.gov or phone, 444-3156.

Governor Bullock Praises Montana Businesses for Stepping up in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic Mask up with these Montana-made masks

Governor Bullock Praises Montana Businesses for Stepping up in Response to COVID-19 Pandemic Mask up with these Montana-made masks

MONTANA – Governor Steve Bullock today praised Montana companies for pivoting their normal operations to produce cloth face masks, 3D-printed face masks, face shields, surgical gowns and hand sanitizer, and reminded businesses that funding is available to help support masking up.

“Large and small Montana producers have stepped up in a big way to meet the demands created by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Governor Bullock said. “As we ask Montanans to mask up, social distance and remain vigilant when it comes to sanitizing, you can also support Montana-made companies making products to keep our fellow Montanans safe.”

Click to read the full article and view a list of companies making masks and sanitizer in Montana.

Governor Bullock Issues Directive Requiring Face Coverings in Certain Indoor Spaces and Outdoor Gatherings to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19

Directive Applies to Counties Currently Experiencing Four or More Active Cases of COVID-19

Governor Bullock Issues Directive Requiring Face Coverings in Certain Indoor Spaces and Outdoor Gatherings to Prevent the Spread of COVID-19

MONTANA – Governor Steve Bullock today issued a directive requiring face coverings in certain indoor spaces and for certain organized outdoor activities in counties currently experiencing four or more active cases of COVID-19 to slow the spread of the virus in Montana.

Click to read the full article.

Click to read the Governor's Directive.

Documents to download

Public Meeting (Via Zoom): MT Oilseed Advisory Committee

July 16, 2020 at 8:30 a.m.

Public Meeting (Via Zoom): MT Oilseed Advisory Committee

The Montana Oilseed Advisory Commmittee will meet via Zoom at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday, July 16th. 

Zoom Meeting Info:

To join using a computer:  https://mt-gov.zoom.us/j/96698102415?pwd=NExzbDN6UlZvN0xacTVVTlJvaFg1Zz09; Meeting ID: 966 9810 2415; Password: 976388

To join by phone: +1 646 558 8656 or +1 406 444 9999; Meeting ID: 966 9810 2415; Password: 976388

 

For more information, please call (406) 444-2402 or email danielle.jones@mt.gov

Public Meeting (via Zoom): Agriculture Development Council

July 21, 2020 at 12:00 p.m.

Public Meeting (via Zoom): Agriculture Development Council

The Agriculture Development Council will meet via Zoom on Tuesday, July 21st at 12:00 p.m.

To join using a computer:

https://mt-gov.zoom.us/j/94904787745?pwd=QWk0YlVCTFZ6V0w5TzJTVlBYS3pTdz09; Meeting ID: 949 0478 7745; Password: 712561

To join by phone:

+1 646 558 8656 or +1 406 444 9999; Meeting ID: 949 0478 7745; Password: 712561

Click to learn more about the Agriculture Development Council.

ARM Public Hearing Notice: Commodity Reporting (4-20-268)

Conference Call - Thu, Jul 16, 2020 at 1:00pm

On July 16, 2020, at 1:00 p.m., the Department of Agriculture will hold a public hearing in Room 225 of the Scott Hart Building, at Helena, Montana, as well as virtually through the meeting platform Zoom to consider the proposed amendment and adoption of the rules referenced in MAR Notice No. 4-20-268. In the matter of the amendment of ARM 4.9.402 and ARM 4.21.402 and the adoption of New Rule I and New Rule II pertaining to Violations in Commodity Reporting.

Both proposal notices and their public hearing information can also be viewed at the Secretary of State’s website at: https://sosmt.gov/arm/register/.

 

Join Zoom Meeting:

Online:  https://mt-gov.zoom.us/j/91007552635, Meeting ID: 910 0755 2635

 

Dial by Telephone: +1 646 558 8656 or +1 406 444 9999, (Meeting ID: 910 0755 2635) or find your local number: https://mt-gov.zoom.us/u/ad7unpPJWA

 

For additional information or assistance with or the virtual meeting details, please contact Virginia Corbett by email at agr@mt.gov or by phone at (406) 444-3156.

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Montana Department of Agriculture
Phone : (406) 444-3144
E-mail : agr@mt.gov
Fax : (406) 444-5409
302 N Roberts
Helena, MT 59601


Montana Ag by the Numbers

In a state where cattle outnumber people, agriculture is our business. In fact, it is Montana’s number one industry and growing.

$4.4

Billion Industry

26,900

Farms & Ranches

58

Million Acres

1

State Rank in
Organic Wheat
Production