On 17 June 1887, two gazettal notices announced the establishment of a Department of Agriculture and the position of Under-Secretary for Agriculture whose appointment was to take effect from 1 July 1887. The Herbarium and the Colonial Botanist's Office were also transferred to the new department from the Museum.
From 1 July 1897 (circa month), the offices of the Chief Inspector of Stock, Registrar of Brands, and Inspector of Meat under Live Stock and Meat Export (positions held by the same person), and the Stock Institute, were transferred from the Home Secretary's Office to the Department of Agriculture.
The Department was established to encourage agricultural settlement in Queensland, and provide information regarding land and cultivation to selectors.
Services by the Department included:
seed and plant distribution
disease control in plants - (and animals from Jul 1897)
stock control including movement, brands, slaughtering, exports (from Jul 1897)
publication of the Agricultural Journal (from July 1897)
In 12 August 1890 the portfolio of Secretary for Public Lands and Agriculture was created, and the first full-time portfolio of Secretary of Agriculture was established in 1897. From 1 July 1897, the Stock Branch was transferred to the department, but the two branches, Agriculture and Stock, acted as separate agencies, and produced two annual reports. The offices comprising Stock acted under the position or various titles, for example, Chief Inspector of Stock (who controlled the Branch), or Live Stock and Brands Office, Stock Branch or Department (See 2484). In 1897 the Queensland Agricultural College at Gatton was opened. The Bureau of Sugar Experiment Stations was set up in 1901.
Agricultural Chemical Laboratory
State Farms - Westbrook, Hermitage (1897), Gindie, Biggenden (1898)
State Nurseries - Cairns and Mackay, 1889
Stock Institute (from 1897)
Queensland Agricultural College, Gatton
Forest Nurseries (Fraser Island)
Travelling Dairies (1889 - 1896)
The branches of Agriculture and Stock were merged to form the Agriculture and Stock Department from 1 January 1904.