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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.


Montana Drought Impact Reporter Flyer Drought can affect wildfire, agriculture production, tourism, wildlife and many other areas important to Montana. The Montana Governor’s Drought and Water Supply Advisory Committee has put together the Drought Impact Reporter - a live, ongoing questionnaire for reporting local drought impacts.  Link: News Article

Governor Bullock Declares State of Fire Emergency

Click to view the Executive Order

Hay Hotline

  • The Montana Department of Agriculture maintains the Hay Hotline, an online portal where producers can donate, buy, or sell hay.

Unsolicited Seed Packages Reporting

If you have received an unsolicited package of seeds in the mail, please visit our Seed Program page for further instruction.

 

 

 


 

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

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 

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...

Montana Pesticide Fall Recertification Training Webinar Schedule

List of free Zoom webinar trainings is now available for MT pesticide license holders. Each training will provide 1 CE per training.

Montana Pesticide Fall Recertification Training Webinar Schedule

The  MDA Fall webinar trainings schedule is now available to help Montana pesticide applicators fulfill their continuing education requirements for their Montana pesticide license under the current COVID-19 situation. These trainings are being presented via Zoom and are free of charge. Each training will provide 1 CE per training* for the listed classifications (categories).   

  • September 30, 2020: Vertebrate Pests & Human Health (Presented by: Stephen M. Vantassel, MDA Vertebrate Pest Specialist)
  • October 14, 2020: Understanding Pesticide Drift (Presented by: Dr. Cecil Tharp, MSU Pesticide Education Specialist)
  • October 21, 2020 @ 12:00 and 6:00: Understanding Pesticide Labels (Presented by: Myles Sailer, MDA Training and Development Specialist)
  • October 28, 2020: Pesticide Disposal & Container Recycling )Presented by: Carli Davis, MDA Pesticide Disposal and Container Recycling Program)
  • November 4, 2020: What to Expect During an Inspection (Presented by: Kima Traynham and Tonda Moon, MDA Field Staff)
  • November 11, 2020 (Veteran’s Day): Pesticide Storage & Equipment Maintenance (Presented by: Myles Sailer, MDA Training and Development Specialist)
  • November 18, 2020: Pesticide Safety (Presented by: Michaela Hystad, MDA Field Staff)

Click here to learn more and register in advance.

Montana Department of Agriculture’s 2021 Young Ag Couples Conference Postponed to 2022

MDA looks forward to hosting young ag couples in 2022

Montana Department of Agriculture’s  2021 Young Ag Couples Conference Postponed to 2022

The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) has postponed the 2021 Young Ag Couples Conference due to health risks posed by the coronavirus public health crisis.

The 2022 conference will be held in mid-January in Helena. To qualify, couples should be actively engaged in agriculture or agribusiness. Participants are usually nominated by Montana agriculture organizations, but those interested in attending the conference in 2022, or learning more about the conference can view updates on the conference’s Facebook page or contact Dani Jones at (406) 444-2402 or by email at danielle.jones@mt.gov.

Proposals Sought for MT Potato Research & Market Development Program

Proposals due October 28, 2020

Proposals Sought for MT Potato Research & Market Development Program

The Montana Potato Advisory Committee is seeking proposals for the Montana Potato Research & Market Development Program. Proposals should relate to demonstration projects, applied research, and market development projects designed to address needs and opportunities for the Montana potato industry.

Visit https://funding.mt.gov/index.do to apply. All applications must be submitted through the Montana Webgrants system by October 28, 2020. Questions on applications should be directed to the Montana Potato Research & Market Development Program, P.O. Box 200201, Helena, MT 59620-0201 or by contacting Dani Jones at (406) 444-2402 or via email at Danielle.Jones@mt.gov.

Governor Bullock Announces $4.2 Million of Additional Coronavirus Relief Funds Awarded through Meat Processing Infrastructure Grants

40 additional meat processing businesses to receive support to boost in-state processing and increase storage capacity

Governor Bullock Announces $4.2 Million of Additional Coronavirus Relief Funds Awarded through Meat Processing Infrastructure Grants

Governor Steve Bullock today announced $4.2 million in additional funds have been awarded through the Montana Meat Processing Infrastructure Grant (MMPIG) program 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 meat processing infrastructure grant program received an incredible amount of interest, which goes to show just how crucial these investments are for Montana,” Governor Bullock said. “Our hardworking producers need to have viable markets for selling their livestock. These grants allow meat processors to expand their capacity to meet increased demand for local meat and protect consumers from future supply chain disruptions.”

The grant program previously awarded $7.5 million to 62 different processors across the state in early August, making the total awards for meat processing nearly $12 million.

Click here to view the full MT Meat Processing Infrastructure Program award recipient list.

Documents to download

USDA to Provide Additional Direct Assistance to Farmers and Ranchers Impacted by the Coronavirus

Expansion of the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Begins Sept. 21

USDA to Provide Additional Direct Assistance to Farmers and Ranchers Impacted by the Coronavirus

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is implementing the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP) for agricultural producers who continue to face market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19. Signup for CFAP 2 will begin September 21 and run through December 11, 2020.

Producers can apply for assistance through USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA). Customers seeking one-on-one support with the CFAP 2 application process can call 877-508-8364 to speak directly with a USDA employee ready to offer assistance. This is a recommended first step before a producer engages with the team at the FSA county office.

A complete list of eligible commodities, payment rates and calculations can be found on farmers.gov/cfap.

 

Hay Hotline Online Portal Available for Producers Responding to Wildfire Damages

Producers can donate, buy and sell hay using the Hay Hotline online portal maintained by MT Dept. of Agriculture

Hay Hotline Online Portal Available for Producers Responding to Wildfire Damages

The Montana Department of Agriculture would like to remind producers that the Hay Hotline, an online portal where they can donate, buy or sell hay, as well as pasture available or pasture wanted, is available. This online tool can be especially helpful for those responding to damages from recent wildfires.
The department maintains the Hay Hotline as a service to the agricultural industry, making it available with the expectation that all buyers and sellers will treat each other in an equitable and lawful manner. 

Click here to access the Hay Hotline. Please call (406) 444-2402 with any questions.

MT Dept. of Agriculture Recruits for Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Advisory Council

Interested persons can submit a letter of interest and apply to MDA

MT Dept. of Agriculture Recruits for Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Advisory Council

The Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) is currently recruiting for open positions on its Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Advisory Council. The following council terms are currently vacant:

  • Certified Weed Seed Free Forage Producer (Eastern Region)
  • Certified Weed Seed Free Forage Producer (Any Region)
  • Outfitter’s or Guide’s Organization
  • Certified Weed Seed Free Forage Producer (Central Region)
  • Western County Weed District Representative
  • Eastern County Weed District Representative
  • Forage Product Processor

Click here to visit the NWSFF Advisory Council website and apply.

Documents to download

Free Webinar: Vertebrate Pests & Human Health

September 30th at 12:00 p.m. or 6:00 p.m.

Free Webinar: Vertebrate Pests & Human Health

Stephen M. Vantassel, Vertebrate Pest Specialist, for the Montana Department of Agriculture is presenting a no-cost webinar entitled Vertebrate Pests and Human Health on September 30th at 12:00 and 6:00pm. This 1 CE hour-long training will discuss the threats posed by vertebrate animals to human-health and safety and will provide some tips for mitigating those threats. Preregistration is required.

To preregister or to learn more about available trainings visit https://mtplants.mt.gov/PesticideApplicator/MeetingSearch.aspx.

Select the 32 - Vertebrate Pest category under the Webinar meeting type.

For additional information on vertebrate pests visit https://agr.mt.gov/Topics/Vertebrate-Pests

EPA Encourages Schools and Universities to Use EPA-Approved Products and Disinfectants to Keep Students Safe

Reminder to only use cleaning and disinfecting products found on EPA’s List N

EPA Encourages Schools and Universities to Use EPA-Approved Products and Disinfectants to Keep Students Safe

As many students across the nation return to school this fall, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is reminding school districts and state and local officials to remain vigilant when it comes to cleaning and disinfecting school buildings and facilities by using only products found on EPA’s List N. As part of the efforts to safely reopen schools, EPA is continuing to work closely with states, local governments and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to provide up to date information to protect public health as school districts, private schools, and universities develop and implement COVID-19 re-entry plans for their students, staff, and parents.

Click here to view EPA List N (Disinfectants for Use Against COVID-19).

Click here to visit the MT Dept. of Agriculture's Pesticide Product Registration website or email pestreg@mt.gov

Aquatic Invasive Species Grant Program Accepting Applications

Applications are due Thursday October 19, 2020

Aquatic Invasive Species Grant Program Accepting Applications

The Montana Invasive Species Council is now accepting grant applications to fund aquatic invasive species projects. Up to $50,000 is available per project to Montana communities or local, state, tribal, or other entities within the state and to Montana-based non-governmental entities. AIS grants are intended to increase local capacity and involvement to address AIS issues.

Locally-led proposals that address the state-wide priorities will receive ranking preference, however all eligible grant requests will be evaluated and considered. Applications are due Thursday October 19, 2020 by 5:00 p.m. For more information or to apply, click here

Governor Bullock Announces Additional Coronavirus Relief Funds for Meat Processing

Montana Department of Agriculture will review existing applications that have not yet been funded to determine additional awards through the program

Governor Bullock Announces Additional Coronavirus Relief Funds for Meat Processing

MONTANA – Governor Steve Bullock today announced additional funding from the Coronavirus Relief Fund will be directed to the Montana Meat Processing Infrastructure Grant and Social Services Nonprofit Grant programs to fully address identified needs.

“The impacts of the coronavirus pandemic have drawn attention to challenges faced by our nation’s meat processing systems. And by addressing this complex issue here in Montana, we are building resilience to future supply chain interruptions in communities across the state,” Governor Bullock said. “In-state meat processing facilities are critical for producers. Ensuring the proper infrastructure exists to provide them with reliable, value-added markets to sell their meat is essential to bolstering our food security, especially during these times.”

The Montana Department of Agriculture will review existing applications that have not yet been funded to determine additional awards through the program.

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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