Central Agricultural Research Center
The Central Agricultural Research Center consists of 600 acres. The CARC serves ag producers by producing foundation seed of crop varieties developed and released by the Montana Agricultural Experiment Station (MAES), including cereals, oilseeds, pulses and forage crops. The current research center staff is comprised of one superintendent, one faculty, one farm operations manager, one farm mechanic, two master’s level technicians, and support personnel. A local advisory board made up of area producers and industry representatives from the surrounding counties, provides guidance on CARC research priorities.
The mission of the Research Centers is to serve the specific needs of the clientele in local production areas and the broader needs of Montana agriculture in general through applied research directed to the problems and impacts of agricultural production. New knowledge generated by Agricultural Research Center programs benefits Montana agriculture and the scientific community at local, state and national levels. This knowledge is disseminated to the agricultural industry in Montana through publications and teaching to improve the economic status and quality of life of its citizens. Research information also reaches the scientific community through publication in professional journals and presentations at professional meetings, thereby enhancing and promoting the individual professional development of faculty members. Faculty appointments are predominantly research-oriented, with limited opportunities for traditional academic teaching activities.
The Montana State University Agricultural Experiment Station's mission as established in 1893 by the state statute is "to conduct and promote studies, scientific investigations and experiments relating to agriculture, natural resources and rural life, and to diffuse information thereby acquired among the people of Montana." Thus, the research centers fulfill the agricultural research component of Montana State University's federal Land Grant University mission of teaching, research and extension.
The crops species investigated at Central Ag Research Center (CARC) include cereals (barley, emmer, durum, oats, triticale, spelt, and wheat), oilseeds (camelina, canola, flax, mustards, safflower and sunflower), pulses (lentils, peas, chickpeas), other specialty seed-food crops (millet, buckwheat, teff, Indian ricegrass), and forage crops (annual and perennial legumes, annual and perennial grasses and salvage use of damaged grain crops). Horticultural species are evaluated for adaptation to the central Montana climate, also. The CARC serves Ag producers by producing foundation seed of crop varieties developed and released by the Montana Agricultural Experiment Station (MAES). Public tours are conducted at CARC to present research findings and results.