When the state Board of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection meets July 23, it will begin as members tour the Monsanto-Agracetus facility in Middleton at 9 a.m.
The Agracetus campus covers nearly five acres and has 100,000 square feet of research laboratories with a 35,000-square-foot greenhouse complex.
Researchers in molecular biology, tissue culture, plant physiology, agronomy, plant breeding and genetics work on transgenic plant research and development, specifically in soybeans and cotton.
It was at this campus that the "gene gun" method of inserting genes into plant and animal cells was developed. It has been part of the Monsanto Company since 1996
The board will then conduct its regular meeting beginning at 11 a.m. at the West Madison Agricultural Research Station at 8520 Mineral Point Road, Verona, which is located just west of the 12/18 Beltline on Madison's southwest side.
The first order of business is to hear about the University of Wisconsin's research station from Tom Wright. The public will then have a chance to speak to the board during public appearances at 11:15.
The agenda items begin with a rule on mobile air conditioners (ATCP 136) and how to reclaim or recycle refrigerant. The scope statement is the first step in the rule-making process and is being presented by the Division of Trade and Consumer Protection.
Then the board will deliberate on a Direct Marketing rule (ATCP 127) which deals with the state's "no call" program. It is a hearing draft for a permanent rule on that program and is also being presented by the Division of Trade and Consumer Protection.
Just after noon, the board is slated to hear a report from the Division of Animal Health before taking a break for lunch.
At 1:20 p.m., the board is scheduled to act on the Cherry Marketing order, followed by action on a final draft rule (ATCP 161) governing the Grow Wisconsin Dairy Processor grant and loan program through the Division of Agricultural Development.
Board members will then hear a report on the Alice in Dairyland program 2014-15, after which the agenda will shift to meat.
The board will consider a final draft rule on meat and meat products from the Division of Food Safety, and they will hear a report on the Cooperative Interstate Shipment program for meat products from state-inspected meat plants, also from the department's food safety experts.
The board will then consider a long list of what are called "minor and technical" changes to 19 rules, considered "housekeeping" items by the department's legal staff.
At 2:45 the board is slated to hold a discussion on agricultural land sales with staff members from the Department of Revenue, followed by a report from Wisconsin State Statistician Greg Bussler.
The Division of Agricultural Resources Management will then report on the Agrichemical Management Bureau, followed by a report on Agricultural Enterprise Areas.
The agenda finishes up with board members' personal reports, a report from Secretary Ben Brancel and future agenda items.