Also known as:
Minnesota Department of Agriculture
Function: Assists and promotes the agricultural industries in Minnesota; assists agricultural cooperatives, investigates market conditions, enforces laws designed to protect public health and to prevent fraud and deception in the manufacture and distribution of food and other items; collects agricultural statistics (in cooperation with federal government); inspects agricultural products; conducts programs for insect and plant disease control and for weed control.
The Minnesota State Dairy Commission, a forerunner for the Department of Agriculture, was created in 1885 for the limited purpose of prohibiting the sale of adulterated milk and the sale of oleomargarine. The Commission was started with one department head, one assistant and one clerk who doubled as a chemist. The Commission budget was $6,000.
Dairy and Food Commissioner continued (1899 Minn. Laws Chap. 295). Dairy and Food Commissioner appointed by governor (1903 Minn. Laws Chap. 155). Established (1919 Minn. Laws Chap. 444). Reorganized (1925 Minn. Laws Chap. 426 Art. 7). Dairy and Food Department and Department of Agriculture consolidated into Agriculture, Dairy and Food Department (1929 Minn. Laws Chap. 387). Name changed to Agriculture Department (1961 Minn. Laws Chap. 113).
Commissioner; appointed by governor:; Byron Allen, 1955-1961; Duane A. Wilson, 1961-1965; Russell G. Schwandt, 1965-1971; John Wefald, 1971-1977; William Walker, 1977-1978; Mark Seetin, 1978-1982; Jim Nichols, 1982-1990; Elton Redalen, 1990-1995; Gene Hugoson, 1995-2011; Dave Frederickson, 2011-
Record last updated:
Additional print information on this group may be available in the
Library's collection of agency notebooks. Please contact a librarian for
assistance. The Minnesota Agencies database is a work in progress.