University of Missouri officials have announced a restructuring of the Missouri Agricultural Experiment Station and the farms and centers located around the state. The restructuring is planned to take place over the next nine months in an attempt to better align with strategic priorities of the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources and MU Extension.
The restructuring is being based on the recommendations of a task force that did their own research and met with stakeholders over the past year. Those recommendations included restructuring and realigning the centers and farms into four research hubs operated by CAFNR and four Extension and Education Centers operated at MU Extension, creating a statewide advisory committee for the Ag Experiment Station, consolidating human resources, field operations, and administration, and developing a comprehensive communications plan to reach younger farmers and ranchers who are starting their careers in agriculture.
CAFNR would still operate the AES Research, Extension, and Education Centers. Those centers would include a full time director and would be full-fledged University of Missouri CAFNR laboratories. The Thompson Farm near Spickard, the Cornett Farm near Linneus, and the Greenley Farm near Novelty would be part of a Northern Missouri Research umbrella as one of four statewide centers and would be operated at CAFNR AES.
Under the restructuring plan, the Hundley-Whaley property in Albany and the Graves-Chapple property in Atchison County will be MU Extension and Education Centers that will be operated at MU Extension and not CAFNR. Those centers would include a part-time director. The administrative responsibilities would be transitioned to current extension faculty
The University says the restructuring plans would save $800,000, enhance a partnership with MU Extension, and create a stronger program focused on its core mission.