What We Do

Stefan P. Parnay, Agriculture, Weights and Measures - Marin County

The Marin County Department of Agriculture operates under the California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) and the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (CDPR). The department strives to promote and protect agriculture, the environment, and the residents of Marin County through the following programs:

Pest Prevention

Pest prevention involves pest exclusion and pest detection. Under the pest exclusion program, Marin County Agricultural inspectors monitor multiple avenues of pest entry into the county, working to prevent the entry and establishment of exotic pests and limiting the intrastate movement of newly-discovered pests. Pest detection is the preventive search for pests outside of a known infested area. Examples of pests of concern include the Glassy-winged Sharpshooter, European Grapevine Moth, Gypsy Moth, Japanese Beetle, and Med-fly.

Pesticide Enforcement

The function of this program is to ensure proper use of pest control methods and pesticides for the protection of public health and the environment. This is achieved through a permit process and through monitoring pesticide use, responding to pesticide incidents and complaints, and educating users of pesticides on safe pesticide application processes.

Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

The IPM program focuses on preventing pest problems by controlling conditions that may attract and support pests. IPM is a decision-making process for managing pests, which uses pest monitoring to determine if pest injury levels warrant treatment. If so, the treatment combines biological, cultural, mechanical, physical and/or chemical tools and other management practices to control pests in a safe, cost effective and environmentally sound manner that contributes to the protection of public health. Marin County Department of Agriculture manages the School IPM program, and the Marin County Parks oversees the Marin County’s IPM program.

Product Quality

Marin County Inspectors protect consumers by inspecting agricultural products for compliance with regulations and standards and to ensure that businesses are given a fair opportunity to market their products. Inspectors visit horticultural nurseries, farmers markets, organic farms, and locations selling wholesale and retail eggs.

Marin Organic Certified Agriculture (MOCA)

MOCA serves the local community who are promoting sustainable certified organic farming practices. The main duty of MOCA is to uphold the standards of the USDA National Organic Program and document operations practices of sustainable agriculture, to promote productions of organic value, and to ensure that consumers are provided with verifiably organic products.

Biological Control

Under the Biological Pest Control program, we use natural enemies rather than pesticides to help suppress pest populations to economically and environmentally acceptable levels. We establish biological agents such as rust, seed weevils, and parasitic wasps, to eliminate pests and potentially reduce the need to use pesticides.

Livestock Protection

The intent of this program is to resolve livestock depredation challenges through cost-share funding to improve fencing and promote the use of guard protection animals.

Marin/Sonoma Weed Management Area (MSWMA)

MSWMA seeks to improve the effectiveness of local weed management efforts, increasing public awareness of invasive weeds, advancing responsible land stewardship practices, and helping to control weeds across land ownership boundaries.

Farmers’ Markets of Marin County

We inspect producers who sell their commodities at local farmers’ markets, verifying that their goods are indeed of their production, thereby ensuring that wholesale products disguised as locally-grown products do not enter the market. For a listing of certified Farmers Markets in California please visit: CDFA Certified Farmers' Markets

Annual Crop Report

The Department prepares and publishes an annual Livestock and Agricultural Crop Report. The report is a summary of counts, acreage, yields, and the gross value of agricultural production in Marin County. A complete record of Marin County crop reports dating back to 1935.

Weights and Measures Programs

We provide vital consumer protection through our weights and measures programs. This includes verifying:

  • Gasoline pumps are pumping the correct amount of gas
  • You are being charged the lowest advertised or posted price for perishable and nonperishable items at any store using bar code readers, scanners, or price look-up systems
  • Taxi meters are accurately calculating the correct fare
  • Packaged commodities hold the amount stated on the label or contain more
  • Propane meters are delivering the correct amount of gas
  • Scales used at checkout stands, in deli’s, and in other locations are weighing correctly