Today is National Agricultural Day – the day designated to celebrate American agriculture and the abundance of food it provides.
It’s a day, too, to consider who makes that abundance of food possible.
You can’t be in agriculture for long without realizing the people are who agriculture, and the values that underpin what they do every day.
The people are the farm families, the people who, despite all the hoopla about “corporate” and “industrial” agriculture, are still responsible for most of the food production in the United States. Ninety-eight percent of farms in America are owned by families.
The values … Full Article »
By Sean Battles
US Row Crops Communications
Looks great…Nice cob size and flavor nice color…Where did you get it?…If this is what GMO produces, maybe I need to re-consider a few things.
Last harvest, four growers heard those comments from friends, church members and neighbors. The growers had planted, for the first time, Seminis® Performance Series™ Obsession II sweet corn.
Inclined to share their summer treat anyway, the growers decided to give away some sweet corn, this time, with advocacy in mind. “Consumer education is especially important in areas where people are generally more opposed to biotechnology,” says Vic Miller, who … Full Article »
There was a time when newspapers routinely published poetry, but that was a century or so ago. Times changed, and poetry largely disappeared from the newspapers delivered to our doorsteps.
Except, perhaps, in Champaign, Illinois.
The Champaign News-Gazette discovered a Central Illinois farmer who happened to write poetry. One thing led to another, and late last year, the newspaper published Song of the Prairie by Linden Warfel.
Warfel is a fourth-generation generation farmer, and he is a lot more than that, too: a husband (he and he wife Kay have been married almost 50 years), a father (five children), a … Full Article »
Last Week, Progressive Farmer posted a story entitled “Competing to Feed the World Will Require Sustainable Solutions.” The article puts agricultural sustainability in the context of global competition, and stresses the importance of no- and reduced-tillage farming, targeted nitrogen placement, precision soil testing, use of biotech seed, and maintaining buffer strips and waterways, among other practices.
“Every farmer needs to determine if they are farming for the day or farming for the future,” Iowa farmer Gary Edwards says. “If you are farming for the future, then you need to look at ways to maximize production longevity. To maintain … Full Article »
Over at Monsanto’s America Farmers page on Facebook, farmers were asked what’s the best part about being a farmer. A lot of people responded, and the answers were compiled into this infographic.
… Full Article »
I grew up a city kid. My idea of where food came from was the local A&P grocery store. Occasionally, we’d visit my uncle’s farm “out in the country,” where he grew strawberries, vegetables and enough grain to feed his animals. My mother still has a photograph of me riding a pony at the farm.
In elementary and middle school, we learned about farmers and agriculture in a variety of ways – art, geography, and music, to mention a few. In eighth grade we were required to study “natural resources” for six weeks in our state history class, and I … Full Article »
For many farmers in the United States, the start to the 2012 season was almost too good to be true. A mild winter and an early warm-up in March gave most Midwestern farmers, including DEKALB and Asgrow customers Jim Ryan of Viola, Ill., and Steve Becker of McLeansboro, Ill., and Lewis Hybrids customer Dave Hollenberg of Mexico, Mo., an opportunity to plant earlier than usual.
And then, the rain “shut off,” as Ryan said. Ryan and most farmers in the Midwest received very little rain during the critical parts of the growing season. The University of Nebraska’s Drought Monitor, updated … Full Article »
By Kelcie Jones
California State FFA Secretary
Throughout high school, students enrolled in agricultural education and active members in their local Future Farmers of America (FFA) chapter have the opportunity to seek out leadership positions within their school or on a larger scale. These positions allow students to refine their skills on agriculture advocacy, leadership, and networking to encourage career success in the future.
Many times, these elections require a speech, an application, and an interview. I remember my first election like it was yesterday. As nerve-wracking as it was, experiences in the FFA like this one have made me … Full Article »
By Elizabeth Niven
As the constant rain soaked eastern Canada in the spring of 2011, Monsanto’s sales, manufacturing and operations teams were scrambling behind the scenes to address an epic redistribution of seeds because of the weather conditions affecting corn farmers. The extreme weather delayed planting and flooded fields already planted. Many seed orders were no longer appropriate given the conditions on the ground and, in many cases, replants were necessary. In some cases, soybeans needed to replace corn.
“Typically, a very small percentage of farmers have to substitute one corn hybrid for an earlier one because of weather-related issues … Full Article »
By Elizabeth Niven
What started as a component of a DEKALB-brand introduction in South Africa has emerged as a model program to strengthen customer relationships by engaging one of the most important and influential partners in the farm family: the wife.
In South Africa, most of the commercial farmers are men, but farming is a family business and most women play an integral role in the business. Many times, wives reconcile the books, serve as the accountant and bookkeeper and order the supplies, including seeds.
“We recognize the important role the wives play in decision-making and farming activities in general,” … Full Article »