Category: Agriculture

Central Minnesota Corn Farmer up for Conservation Award

Want an example of on-farm conservation practices in action? Look no further than Jon Hansmeier.

The list of conservation practices that Hansmeier has implemented on 660 acres of cropland in a corn/soybean rotation on his farm in Foley is impressive. Examples include:

  • Using mulch tillage on 146 acres of cropland , keeping at least one-third of the soil surface covered with crop residue.
  • Erosion control practices using a combination of fill material,

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Corn Links: A Roundup of Corn News and Information From Around the Web

Who needs Google when you have the Minnesota CORNerstone blog? Every now and then we’ll bring you Corn Links, a collection of the latest corn and farming-related news, information, links and commentary from around the web.

  • Kudos to Star Tribune outdoors columnist Dennis Anderson, who has taken shots at farmers over the years, for keeping an open mind and coming away impressed after a visit to John Peterson’s corn and soybean farm in North Branch.

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USDA Crop Report: Dry Weather Impacting Minnesota's Corn

First it was the wet spring. Then an unseasonably cool July and early August. Now it’s lack of rain. The weather for many Minnesota corn farmers has come full circle this planting and growing season.

According to the USDA, statewide average temperatures for the week ending Sept. 1 were almost 12 degrees above normal. Topsoil and subsoil moisture levels were short at 66 and 61 percent, respectively, and overall corn conditions lagged behind compared to last year.

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Farmers and Technology: Staying Connected on the Farm and Agvocating to Consumers

Written by Wanda Patsche

I will be the first to admit that I am an electronic device “junkie!” I own and use a desktop computer, laptop computer, iPad, Kindle and iPhone. And, yes at times, I do use more than one device at the same time!

Computers have been a huge part of my life and there is no such thing as too many electronic devices in my mind.

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Blame McDonald's — not Ethanol — for Increasing Chicken Prices

chartWell, don’t “blame” McDonald’s, that’s a little harsh. It’s a good thing for agriculture that McDonald’s is buying more chicken from farmers to meet demand for a new menu item. Bravo!

But this story from Bloomberg Businessweek about how McDonald’s may be influencing chicken prices as it prepares to add chicken wings to its menu is important for poultry farmers to read for this reason: There are many factors that influence food prices.

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Minnesota Gophers Farm Family of the Game goes to 5th Generation Dodge County Farmers

There’s a shade tree on Roger Toquam’s farm that sometimes doubles as a board room. On a hot day last week, the “board room” was packed for a very important meeting.

Roger, two of his three sons, and Roger’s father – three generations of Toquams — were gathered to talk farming. They covered strategies for improving their corn, soybean and contract hog finishing farm, and also reflected a little on how fortunate they all are to be a part of such a special family “business.”

“I thought to myself,

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Ag Water Quality Experts Tour Minnesota Discovery Farms Network

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

Farmers want to know the volume of nutrients and sediment leaving their land. Eleven such producers across the state of Minnesota take part in Minnesota Discovery Farms Network, and three of these farms hosted a tour of agricultural water quality experts on Aug. 13-15 from states that have each developed their own Discovery Farms network.

Warren Formo, director of Minnesota Agricultural Water Resources Center,

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What will it take to surpass the next yield barrier?

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

The Lantz brothers, Matt and Luke, achieve consistently high yields on their Lake Crystal farm where they feed all of their grain to their farrow-to-finish operation (60,000 pigs a year). The total crop land in production is 2,800 acres in rotation, with about a third devoted to soybeans.

“This is not about getting to some high number once, but it’s about increasing by five bushels here with one practice,

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Corn is Everywhere at the Minnesota State Fair

A search for “corn” using the Minnesota State Fair’s food finder tool yields 122 results. That’s a lot of options for fairgoers attending The Great Minnesota Get Together to find some type of food — corn on the cob, corn dogs, corn-fed meat or popcorn — that uses corn in one way or another.

But food stands won’t be the only place to learn about corn at the Minnesota State Fair,

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Let's Help the Poultry Industry Better Understand Ethanol and the Renewable Fuels Standard

For some reason, our fellow farmers in the poultry industry still do not understand the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) and ethanol.

Maybe they’ll get it if corn farmers contact them directly.

This recent commentary in the Star Tribune, penned by a turkey and a chicken producer, attacked the RFS and called on Congress to reduce the ethanol blend rate. The piece also blamed ethanol for increased food and feed costs by making the same old tired and dated food vs.

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