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Kansas Department of Agriculture


Kansas Department of Agriculture

Kansas Department of Agriculture
Agency overview
Formed 1872
Headquarters 1320 Research Park Drive
Manhattan, Kansas
Employees About 240
Annual budget $10 million
Agency executive Jackie McClaskey, Secretary of Agriculture
Website Kansas Department of Agriculture

The Kansas Department of Agriculture is a department of the government of Kansas under the Governor of Kansas. It is responsible for providing services and expertise that promote and protect Kansas' food supply and natural resources while stimulating economic growth. The head of the Department is the Secretary of Agriculture, who is appointed by the Governor, with the approval of the Kansas Senate.[1]

The current Secretary of Agriculture is Jackie McClaskey, who was appointed by Governor Sam Brownback in 2013. Former Secretaries of Agriculture have included Sam Brownback, Foster Dwight Coburn, Alfred Gray, Adrian Polansky, and Joshua Svaty.


  • History 1
  • Leadership 2
    • State Board of Agriculture 2.1
  • Divisions 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


The Kansas Department of Agriculture was created in 1872, building upon the work of the Kansas State Agricultural Society, which had served as a model for departments of agriculture nationwide.[2]

The Department traces its history back to the 1850s when a group of farmers in Kansas Territory created agriculture "societies."[2] Records of the earliest society, established in 1857, are sparse because they were burned when a confederate named William Quantrill raided and burned Lawrence, Kansas.[2]

On March 5, 1862, the

  • Kansas Department of Agriculture official website

External links

  1. ^ "Kansas department of agriculture; creation", KSA 74-560, State of Kansas, 2014 [1995] 
  2. ^ a b c d "Kansas Historical Society". Retrieved 2009-06-20. 
  3. ^ "Kansas Department of Agriculture relocates to Manhattan". Retrieved June 24, 2014. 


  • Secretary of Agriculture
    • Food Safety and Consumer Protection Division - responsible for protecting the health and well-being of all consumers of agricultural products
      • Retail Food Inspection Section
      • Meat and Poultry Inspection Section
      • Dairy Inspection Section
      • Agricultural Commodities Assurance Section
      • Weights and Measures Section
      • Grain Warehouse Inspection Section
    • Environmental Protection Division - responsible for protecting the health of the state's natural and cultivated plant resources, and the environment, through preventive actions and activities designed to ensure the safe and proper use of agricultural chemicals.
      • Plant Protection and Weed Control Section
      • Pesticide and Fertilizer Section
      • Agricultural Laboratory Section
    • Division of Water Resources - governs how the state's water resources are allocated and used and regulates through statute the construction of dams, levees and other changes to streams.
      • Water Appropriation Program
      • Water Structures Program
      • Water Management Services Program
    • Administrative Services and Support Division - responsible for coordinating the management functions of the Department
      • Office of the Secretary
      • Fiscal Section
      • Personnel Section
      • Legal Section
      • Public Information Section
      • Information Technology Section


As of 2011, the current members of the Board were as follows: District 1 - Tracy Brunner District 1 - Jay R. Garetson District 1 - Stephen J. Irsik, Jr. District 1 - Jerry C. McReynolds District 1 - Kenneth R. Palmgren District 2 - Thad G. Geiger District 2 - Ann M. Peuser District 3 - Roland L. Rhodes District 4 - Michael L. Springer

The Board assists the Governor and Secretary in the development of legislative priorities and Departmental rules and regulations, except those which relate solely to personnel matters of the Department. The Board, however, has no powers, duties or functions concerning the day-to-day operations of the Department.

The Kansas State Board of Agriculture serves as an advisory board to the Governor of Kansas and the Secretary of Agriculture. The Board is composed of nine members, appointed by the Governor to serve four year terms. One member is appointed from each of Kansas' four congressional districts, with the remaining five being appointed at-large. No two members can reside in the same county and no more than five members may be from the same political party. The Board is responsible for electing is own Chair and Vice Chair.

State Board of Agriculture

The Department is administered by the Secretary of Agriculture. Under Governor Sam Brownback, Jackie McClaskey was appointed as Secretary in December 2013. Jake Worcester and Erik Wisner are Assistants to the Secretary.


On June 16, 2014, the majority of the department's employees were moved from Topeka to offices in Manhattan, Kansas.[3]

Through the grasshopper invasion, droughts, blizzards, and through the invention of barbed wire, the development of combines and advances undreamed in 1872, the Kansas Department of Agriculture has served the producers and consumers of Kansas agricultural products.

The board's early years were spent organizing a state fair and acting as an immigration agency to attract needed settlers to homestead in Kansas. Gradually, the state lost its image as a part of the "Great American Desert". Farms and towns sprang up on the fertile plains of the future wheat state. The Board of Agriculture through an annual report and various publications about Kansas served as a source of information and new techniques in farming.

In 1872, the Kansas Legislature created the State Board of Agriculture from the structure of the Agriculture Society. It became the grandfather of agricultural departments in all fifty states. [2]

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