Category: Innovation

No-Till at the Wolle Farm

Corn Growers recommend conservation practices to achieve ambitious sustainability goal

Written by Harold Wolle

On my farm in St. James, I am proud to have implemented several conservation practices that protect water quality, improve soil health and preserve wildlife habitat. I am also proud to serve as President of the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA), and lead the organization’s new initiative to make Minnesota corn farmers the most sustainable and environmentally responsible in the United States.

I must admit,

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Talking soil health on Bryan Biegler’s farm near Lake Wilson at a recent field day event.

MCGA’s newest board member is a soil health innovator

Bryan Biegler, a farmer in Lake Wilson, Minn., has been appointed to an at-large position on the board of directors of Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA).

Biegler has been farming for the past 25 years. He replaces Tim Wiersma on the MCGA board, who resigned due to other commitments, and will be up for election in January.

Four years ago, responding to problems with soil erosion on the land he was working,

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Becoming the most environmentally responsible farmers

The Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) announced today its intentions to implement an ambitious set of initiatives with the goal of making Minnesota corn farmers the most sustainable and environmentally responsible in the United States.

In making the announcement, MCGA President Harold Wolle said: “This is a grassroots, farmer-driven effort that addresses values shared by both farmers and non-farmers. It’s a lofty goal. But we believe the approximately 25,000 corn farmers MCGA represents are already making great strides in achieving it.

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The next value-added market for Minnesota corn? Shrimp!

trū® Shrimp Systems, in the southwestern Minnesota town of Balaton, hopes to become the premier supplier of fresh shrimp to the United States. With their innovative technology, the world is their oyster — success here could open the door to the 1.6-billion-pound demand for shrimp in the United States.

It’s a billion-pound market and it’s a space corn producers have never been in before. Thanks to a grant from Minnesota Corn Research &

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$1.1 Million grant funds farmer-driven water quality research

Farmers believe that raising food efficiently goes hand in hand with taking good care of the soil and the water.

The farmer-funded Minnesota Agricultural Water Resource Center (MAWRC) has received its first major grant from an outside organization— a $1.1 million grant to fund a project called “Developing Diagnostics to Improve Water Quality and Soil Health on Tile Drained Lands in Minnesota and Wisconsin.” The money comes from USDA’s National Resources Conservation Service (NRCS).

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Farmers foster soil health to fight wind erosion

Talking soil health on Bryan Biegler's farm near Lake Wilson.

Talking soil health on Bryan Biegler’s farm near Lake Wilson.

On Thursday, despite rain and the threat of thunder, a group of farmers crowded around a pit dug in the midst of row crops almost ready to harvest. They were eager to hear about techniques to assure the health of the soil on their farms for generations to come.

Two soil experts pointed out the layer-cake quality and texture found in healthy soil.

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MCGA offering conservation innovation grants for the second year

Minnesota corn farmers will once again have the opportunity to put their innovative conservation ideas into action through the Minnesota Corn Growers Association’s (MCGA) Innovation Grant Program. Proposals on how to better manage nitrogen, protect water quality, or compare farming measuring tools are being accepted through Dec. 15, 2016.

MCGA, working alongside the Minnesota Corn Research & Promotion Council (MCR&PC), is offering a total of $255,000 in Innovation Grants to any Minnesota corn farmer seeking to test or develop an innovative or best practice in the following areas:

  • Nitrate loss reduction
  • Improved nitrogen management practices for Minnesota soils
  • Maintaining or improving water quality
  • Innovative soil conservation practices,

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Taking the kura (clover) cure

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

It seems odd to say that after 10 years, they are still at the early stages of research into kura clover. Used as a perennial cover crop, it offers a promising addition to corn and soybean production systems, but there are still a lot of questions to ask.

Here at the largest of the University of Minnesota Extension Service Outreach and Research Center (4,000 acres-plus),

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Sediment research will help direct farmer stewardship

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

Knowing where sediment comes from will ultimately help us devise ways to reduce the amount of sediment that impacts the biological health and recreational value of Minnesota’s waterways.

For the past five years, Patrick Belmont, a watershed scientist from Utah State University, has worked to ‘fingerprint’ the sediment in the Root River Watershed, a system of rivers and streams draining an area the size of Delaware in southeast Minnesota.

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Striking gold, helping farmers test new ideas

Written by Haleigh Ortmeier-Clarke

When it comes to agricultural research, the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) has hit a gold mine. Where is this gold mine you may ask? Well, it’s in the brain of every farmer.

While scientists go to school to learn the scientific method and the biological processes they work with, farmers live and breathe agriculture. Farmers have to use their brains every day to come up with solutions to problems and ideas to make their practice better.

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