University of Minnesota Southern Research and Outreach Center
The Southern Research and Outreach Center located in Waseca, is an interdisciplinary department within the University of Minnesota’s College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences.
The mission of the SROC is to conduct theoretical and applied research and research-based outreach and extension to enhance the value of the rural landscape. The goal of all research, outreach and extension at the SROC is to add value to agricultural enterprises, promote rural vitality, and harness the nutrient cycle, while maintaining the integrity of the environment.
The SROC represents the soil and climatic conditions of south-central and southeastern Minnesota. The counties relating to the SROC represent roughly one-sixth of the state’s land area but produce over one-third of Minnesota’s cash farm sales. As a result, agricultural research designed for this area has vital impact on Minnesota’s leading industry.
Faculty working at the SROC represent the discipline areas of soil, water and climate, horticultural science, agronomy and plant genetics, plant pathology, animal science (dairy, beef and swine), and biosystems and agricultural engineering. Much of their research and outreach is done in collaboration with others including U of M Extension, industry, stakeholders, and more.
A number of side benefits result from research being conducted at the SROC. Important among these are:
- collection and dissemination of daily weather data
- observation of research work and learning experiences for all ages–elementary students to adult learners
- and tours for the general public and international visitors. A series of special events, addressing key issues, is held throughout the year to bring the results of research at the SROC to the public.
An annual U of M Open House brings the resources of the University and others to the community at large. People of all ages, interests and backgrounds are drawn to this event which features
educational booths and exhibits
- MN grown foods and wines
- activities for children of all ages (fun with 4-H, farm animals, a corn maze, sanctioned kids’ power pedal pull, and more)
- a country store (featuring UM meat, cheese, and Gopher gear)
- farmers’ market, door prizes and much more.
For more information on the U of M Southern Research and Outreach Center or events being held at the Center contact
|January 13||Winter Crops Day *
(Waseca & Lake Crystal)
|March 6||Horticulture Day*|
|June 22||Agronomy Field Tour*|
|September 16||9th Annual Open House*|
* Open to the public — unless noted otherwise, event location is the Southern Research and Outreach Center
The Southern Research and Outreach Center (SROC), located in Waseca, takes cutting edge science from the laboratory to the farm. Farming is still the number one industry in Minnesota and our region and SROC is working hard every day to make sure Minnesota farmers continue to feed the world. As a part of the University of Minnesotas College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences SROC conducts research on plant and animal farming techniques and then hands that off to farmers through teaching.
Located on 928 acres SROC has been a proud member of the Waseca community since 1913. In addition to agriculture SROC tracks the weather in more detail than any meteorologist doeswant to know what the soil temperature was 20 below the surface on May 7, 1999 the folks at SROC can help you (it was 55 degrees). The SROC open house each fall is a must attend event – featuring a corn maze, free dinner and Goldie the Gopher.
From organic farming to plant genetics, livestock to conservation efforts SROC is leading Waseca and Minnesota into a new century of farming.