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What is your mission?

To regulate and support Arizona agriculture in a manner that encourages farming, ranching, and agribusiness while protecting consumers and natural resources.

What do you do?

The Arizona Department of Agriculture consists of three main divisions:

  • horses picture    Animal Services

  • field picture    Environmental Services

  • field picture    Plant Services

The Department includes the Office of Pest Management, a State Agricultural Laboratory, a Citrus, Fruit and Vegetable Standardization and Fresh Produce Grade Inspection program, and an Agricultural Consultation and Training program. The following are brief descriptions of some, but not all, of the responsibilities within each of these areas.

 

Office of Pest Management

The mission of the Arizona Office of Pest Management is to advocate and promote, through education, training and enforcement, the safe application of pest control technologies which will result in the maximization of the health and safety of the residents of Arizona, and protection of their property and the environment

Agricultural Consultation & Training

Provides assistance to members of the agricultural community in complying with state and federal regulations, including worker protection safety and training requirements, animal waste water management regulations, nutrient management planning and air quality regulations. Offers a formal means by which the regulated agricultural community may request compliance assistance without regulatory repercussions. Administers the Growing Smarter Open Space Reserve Grant Program and oversees the administration of the Agricultural Commodity Councils, Agricultural Employment Relations Board and the Arizona Agricultural Protection Commission.

Animal Services Division

Protects and improves the health, quality, and marketability of Arizona animals and animal products by identifying, diagnosing, and preventing existing and emerging diseases, protecting humans from contagious diseases, and responding to emergencies. Enforces laws concerning the movement, sale, importation, transport and processing of livestock. Conducts food quality and safety inspections of milk and meat products produced and processed in Arizona, as well as egg and egg products produced in, or imported to, Arizona.

Boards & Commissions

The Agricultural Consultation and Training program provides administrative support, such as statutory compliance; meeting schedules and agendas; open meeting law compliance; financial reports and minute preparation for the following groups: AZ Citrus Research Council, AZ Grain Research and Promotion Council, AZ Iceberg Lettuce Research Council, AZ Agricultural Employment Relations Board and the AZ Agricultural Protection Commission.

Citrus, Fruit & Vegetable Standardization & Fresh Produce Grade Inspection

Increases the potential for domestic and international marketing and protects against exporting, importing and selling of substandard produce by development and enforcement of uniform standards. Conducts inspections encompassing several areas, including quality, condition, size, maturity and labeling of produce. Enforces U.S. import requirements and marketing order restrictions at Arizona’s border with Mexico. Performs shipping point and terminal market produce inspections through cooperative agreement with United States Department of Agriculture. Supports the Statewide Gleaning Project in harvesting surplus crops for the hungry.

Environmental Services Division

Performs feed, fertilizer, pesticide and seed label inspections, sampling, registration and licensing to ensure compliance with state and federal laws and ensures consumers are protected. Enforces pesticide use regulations to ensure products are applied according to label directions, established buffer zones are adhered to, and environmental and human concerns are protected. Assures competency of pesticide applicators, pest control advisors and pesticide safety trainers through training, testing and certification. Protects agricultural workers and pesticide handlers on agricultural establishments by enforcing state and federal agricultural safety regulations. Conducts criminal investigations of native plant and livestock law violations through the Office of Special Investigations. Provides specialized enforcement and response support to divisions within the department.

Plant Services Division

Safeguards agriculture, food and the environment from the risks associated with the entry, establishment and spread of plant pests, diseases and noxious weeds thereby promoting agricultural sustainability, market access and competitiveness. Enforces state and federal quarantine regulations to ensure agricultural, environmental and public concerns are protected. Conducts inspections throughout the state to enforce regulations on the importation, export and movement of plant materials. Provides export certification inspections for the international and domestic shipment of Arizona agricultural commodities. Conducts early detection surveys for the presence of exotic plant pests and diseases of concern to Arizona agriculture and its public in order to offer the best chance at successful eradication.

State Agricultural Laboratory

Provides analytical and technical support services to each of the regulatory divisions within the department as well as other state and federal agencies to assure quality products and to protect the public’s health and safety. Conducts analysis for pesticide, drug and antibiotic residues in agricultural products. Tests products ranging from meat to milk to vegetables. Identifies plant pathogens and insects and provides identifications on seed samples. Analyzes feed, fertilizer and pesticide formulations to ensure that consumers receive quality products that meet label guarantees.

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