Category: Agriculture

SROC centennial celebration helps build connections to farming

In 1912-1913 the University of Minnesota purchased 240 acres in Waseca County, for the purpose of creating a “practical” farm that would operate according to the latest research information and best management practices. One hundred years later, the University’s “practical farm” continues as the Southern Research and Outreach Center (SROC), an important center for agricultural research, whose work has implications for farmers – and those who depend on farmers – around the world.

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University of Minnesota Extension Soil Compaction Field Day Videos

The Minnesota Corn Growers Association sponsored a Soil Compaction Field Day in conjunction with the University of Minnesota some time ago. The University’s Extension service recently created the below four videos from the field day:

Factors contributing to soil compaction

Soil structure: A natural defense against soil contraction

Managing vehicle traffic to reduce compaction

How to make your tires perform at their best

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Corn Links: Farm Bill, Chipotle and the Chesapeake Bay

The farm bill is still going nowhere, Chipotle gets called out by Funny or Die and a judge upholds a ruling on the Chesapeake Bay Total Maximum Daily Load issue. More details below in this Friday’s Corn Links:

Farm bill still stuck
If congress fails to pass a farm bill by Oct. 1, conservation programs will take a hit. According to Andrew McElwaine of the American Farmland Trust, conservation compliance has saved more than 295 million tons of soil annually and protected more than 3 million acres of wetlands.

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Food and Farming Panel Sparks Debate, Shows Complexity of Agriculture Issues

What happens when a college in the heart of Minnesota’s Iron Range holds a panel discussion on food, farming and agriculture policy?

I was curious, so I made the drive up to Itasca Community College (ICC) in Grand Rapids to listen to a panel titled “The Present and Future of Agriculture: The Benefits and Costs of Current Agricultural Policy.”

It began as a typical college campus panel discussion. Facts were recited.

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Farm Tour Highlights Nitrate Reduction Strategies

Two research locations in the coarse-textured soils of Central Minnesota highlight the sensitivity of the region to groundwater impacts, but also show how eager farmers are to come up with solutions that reduce the presence of nitrate-nitrogen below very stringent levels.

The Clean Water Fund generated by the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment sales tax approved by Minnesota voters presents a number of opportunities to protect or remediate groundwater resources impacted by surface runoff.

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Thalmann Family Hosts Taiwan Delegation on their Farm in Plato, Minn.

The Thalmann family is used to having visitors on its farm in Plato, Minn., about an hour west of the Twin Cities. It just so happens that a lot of those visitors over the years have been from other countries.

A 20-member delegation from Taiwan stopped by the Thalmann farm on Saturday. The group was in Minnesota to sign a letter of intent to purchase $3.5 billion in U.S. grown corn and soybeans and wanted an up-close look at a Minnesota farm.

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Minnesota Corn Growers Association Welcomes Taiwan Delegation to Minnesota

Leaders of a 20-member delegation from Taiwan signed a letter of intent during a ceremony today at the Minnesota state capitol to purchase an estimated $1.83 billion worth of U.S. corn and corn co-products in 2014-15.

The letter — also signed by Gov. Mark Dayton and Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) president Tom Haag – declares the Taiwan Feed Industry Association’s intent to purchase about 197 million bushels of corn and 500,000 metric tons of corn co-products such as dried distillers grains (DDG).

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Gophers Football Farm Family of the Game: The Pace Family from Hanska, Minn.

As long as he can remember, Bruce Pace wanted to be a farmer.

He belonged to 4-H and FFA growing up and showed hogs at the state fair with his brother. By seventh grade, he was actively farming with his father and got into crop farming after high school.

Today, Bruce grows 1,000 acres of corn and soybeans, runs a custom hog feeding facility and oversees a Pioneer seed dealership. The farm,

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Minnesota Farmers are top users of USDA Conservation Program

More farmers in Minnesota than any other state have used a voluntary USDA program that aims to improve, maintain and expand on-farm conservation practices.

The Conservation Stewardship Program (CSP) is administered by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and encourages farmers to take measurable steps to improve soil, water quality, wildlife habitat and other conservation efforts.

Since the CSP program began in 2009, nearly 2 million acres of Minnesota farmland has been enrolled.

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Green Star Farms Initiative: Benchmarking and Accelerating On-Farm Best Management Practices

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

The land that brothers Nathan and Sean Collins farm in Murdock, Minn., has been in production for 150 years. They are the fourth generation of farmers in the Collins family.

According to Nathan, the thriving of that land — as healthy and productive as its ever been — and the thriving of the Collins family goes hand in hand.

That’s why he jumped at the opportunity to join the Green Star Farms Initiative,

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