Face Covering Update

In accordance with the University of Minnesota’s protocol on face coverings, staff members and visitors to MCIA’s office on the campus of the UMN Twin Cities are required to wear facial coverings while indoors, regardless of vaccination status. Masks or facial coverings are not required when alone in an office or when outdoors.

The University continues to follow CDC guidance on public health and safety precautions as Covid-19 transmission rates fluctuate. Wearing a mask or facial covering indoors has been shown to slow the transmission of Covid-19.

Anyone who fails to abide with this directive may be asked or directed to leave the campus space.

To read the full details of the University of Minnesota Face Covering Protocol, updated August 27, 2021, click here. To read University President Joan Gabel’s message regarding face covering requirements, dated August 2, 2021, click here.

Covid-19 Update: MCIA Remains Operational

In response to the global Covid-19 pandemic, the Minnesota Crop Improvement Association is taking precautions to protect the health of its staff and our community. Although we have fewer staff members than usual working at our St. Paul office, all of MCIA’s services will remain operational. We have assigned several of our staff members to work from home.

Access to our facility is limited. If you wish to visit the MCIA office, please call in advance, 612-625-7766. MCIA asks that deliveries be left in the building vestibule, where they will later be retrieved by MCIA staff. The entrance to the building will be kept locked. Also, if you wish to use the shipping and receiving dock, please call in advance to make arrangements with MCIA.

The role of MCIA and its dedicated employees is essential to agriculture in our region. We thank you for your patience and understanding as we work together during this difficult time!

Specific information about each of MCIA’s services follows:

Seed Laboratory. We will continue to process and test samples as efficiently as possible. We will continue to receive samples shipped via FedEx, UPS, Spee-Dee, and USPS or samples dropped off to the cart located in the front entrance of the building. While unforeseeable circumstances may hinder our day-to-day operations, we will strive, to the best of our ability, to provide the services you request.

CONTACT: Chase Mowry, Manager, chase.mowry@mncia.org.

Foundation Seed. Orders and payments for Foundation seed are being processed as they are received. If you have not paid in full for your Foundation seed, please do so promptly. Making payment and returning signed license agreements will allow us to release seed for pick up in a timely manner.

Seed Pickup: Please contact your Foundation seed distributor 1 to 2 days before you plan to pick up your seed. This will provide you with confirmation that your seed is ready and allows the distributor time to prepare your order. If you are using a freight carrier to pick up seed, please let the distributor know this as well, along with your name and contact information, in case there are questions. Do not wait until planting season to try to pick up your seed.

CONTACT: Roger Wippler, Manager, wippl002@umn.edu

Seed Certification. We are processing certification tag and bulk certificate requests as soon as analysis results are reported. Turning around requests as quickly as possible remains our goal. If you have any concerns, or if your immediate needs are not being met, please contact Jody or Janet. We will work closely with you to solve any issues.

CONTACTS: Jody Prudhomme, Manager, jody.prudhomme@mncia.org and Janet Daninger, Certification Specialist, janet.daninger@mncia.org.

Field Services. Field Services staff continue to work from our various home offices, as usual. As we perform on-site facility inspections and related tasks, we are observing CDC-recommended health precautions. We are preparing for the busy inspection season ahead. As always, we are available to answer your questions and meet your needs.

CONTACTS: Kris Folland, Manager, kfolland@wiktel.com and Seth Dagoberg, Special Services Manager, seth.dagoberg@mncia.org.

Organic Services. Organic Services remains in operation, with many of our staff members working from home. Your calls will be answered! However, there may be a delay while your call is transferred to a home office.

Crops and Livestock Operations: Applications are still due April 1 for most crop and livestock operations. Please try to get them in on time. We will process them and get the reviews done and files sent out to inspectors. We will have inspectors schedule inspections on a case-by-case basis. We will respect the wish of any organic operation to delay the inspection. Inspectors have been and continue to be instructed in good sanitation protocols. If you are sick or have been around anyone who is sick, we expect you to cancel the inspection. For our Amish clients: If you receive a note to schedule an inspection and you wish to cancel it, please contact the MCIA office or the inspector immediately.

Handlers and Processors: Please note that we will be here to review new labels and products, update certificates, and provide our normal services by phone and email.

CONTACT: Michelle Menken, Manager, michelle.menken@mncia.org.