The Montana Department of Agriculture operates 30 programs ranging from marketing and business development to pesticide licensing, seed labeling and organic certification. Several of these programs have advisory councils to assist the Department on policy issues or to supervise the expenditure of industry fees on research and promotional efforts.

Ag Development

The Agriculture Development Council establishes policies and priorities to enhance the future development of agriculture in Montana including the award of loans and grants offered through the Growth Through Agriculture program.

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Alfalfa Seed Committee

The Montana Alfalfa Seed Committee provides direction for research and marketing toward the continued growth of the alfalfa seed industry of Montana. The Alfalfa Seed Program is administered by the department's Rural Development Division under the Alfalfa Seed Industry Act.

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Hail Board

The Montana State Hail Insurance Program was created in 1917 to provide basic hail insurance coverage on any crop grown in Montana. The program continues to provide a valuable service to the agricultural producers. View or download the 2018 Hail Report.

The program is directed by a five-member Board of Hail Insurance consisting of the department director, the state auditor, and three other members appointed by the Governor. The program is assigned to the department for administrative purposes, and is self supporting through a trust and reserve established with premiums paid by participating producers.

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Hemp Advisory Committee

After receiving significant interest from producers and stakeholders throughout the state, Montana Department of Agriculture (MDA) Director Ben Thomas appointed nine individuals to the Montana Hemp Advisory Committee, all for terms of one year.

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Noxious Weed Management Advisory Council

Members are appointed by the department director. The Council provides guidance on the Noxious Weed Trust Fund grant program that assists counties, local communities, tribes, researchers and educators in efforts to combat the most serious weed problems in Montana.

Many hours are dedicated to reviewing grant applications and attending the four to five day grant hearings held annually in March. Grant funding recommendations are made by the Council at the conclusion of the hearings and presented to the Director for approval.

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Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Advisory Council

The council advises the Department on Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage issues regarding the forage certification program, forage advertising, and the use of Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage on federal/state lands.

The Council is made up of 10 members including the Director of the Montana Department of Agriculture. Council members represent different groups such as producers, guides and outfitters, weed districts, and pellet manufacturers. The Council recommends inspection fees and marker costs which are regulated by program Rules. The Rules provide a mechanism to standardize fees, inspection procedures, enforcement actions, marking and tracking systems.

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Organic Council

The eight-member Montana Organic Commodity Advisory Committee advises the department on the operation of the state's Organic Certification Program. Under Montana administrative rules, the department director serves on the committee, along with certified organic producers, a certified organic handler, and a consumer representative.

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Potato Advisory Committee

The Montana Potato Research & Market Development Program was created by a vote of Montana potato producers following a process outlined in the Agricultural Commodity Research and Market Development Enabling Act.

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Pulse Crop Committee

The Montana Pulse Research & Market Development Program was created by a vote of Montana pea, lentil and chickpea producers following a process outlined in the Agricultural Commodity Research and Market Development Enabling Act.

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Wheat & Barley Committee

The Montana Wheat and Barley Committee (MWBC) is the producer-funded and directed checkoff organization for wheat and barley growers in the state. The MWBC is attached to the Montana Department of Agriculture for administrative purposes.

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Upcoming Meetings: Ag Boards, Committees & Councils

«June 2020»

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Ag Board, Committee & Council News

Public Meeting Notice: MT Pulse Crop Committee Zoom Conference Call

June 9th at 9:00 a.m.

Public Meeting Notice: MT Pulse Crop Committee Zoom Conference Call

The Montana Pulse Crop Committee will meet via Zoom teleconference at 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, June 9th. For more information, please contact Weston Merrill, at (406) 444-3407.

Zoom Meeting Information

To join by computer: https://zoom.us/j/91650348866 [zoom.us]

To join by phone: (877) 853-5247; Meeting ID: 916 5034 8866

Click to learn more about the Montana Pulse Crop Committee.

Documents to download

Public Meeting Notice: Conference Call - Montana Pulse Crop Committee Meeting

March 26, 2020 at 1:00pm via teleconference

The Montana Pulse Crop Advisory Committee will meet via Skype/Phone teleconference on Thursday, March 26, 2020 at 1:00pm. The Director of the department will be giving an update. Contact Virginia Corbett for Call Information: Virginia.Corbett@mt.gov or (406)444-3156. 

For more information about the Pulse Committee, click here.

Montana Department of Agriculture Seeking Applicants for Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage Advisory Counsel

Applications Accepted until July 1, 2020

Helena Mont. -  The Montana Department of Agriculture is currently recruiting for open positions on the Noxious Weed Seed Free Forage (NWSFF) Advisory Council.  

The deadline for applications is Wednesday July 1, 2020.

Department of Agriculture Current Board Vacancies

  • Currently there are no board vacancies.

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