agriculture

“Going green” New London lettuce farm branches into hemp industry

October 16, 2021

“Going green” New London lettuce farm branches into hemp industry
NEW LONDON—Despite being one of the oldest cultivated crops in history, the hemp industry—at least in the U.S.—is only just beginning to re-establish  its roots, dogged for decades by legal issues and social stigma. However, in the wake of the 2018 Farm Bill, which federally recognizes hemp as an agricultural crop, and with research confirming the medical efficacy of cannabinoids, enterprising farmers throughout the country are hoping to cash in on the myriad of products derived from the plant. But

Understanding the future of farming after COVID is theme of Partners in Ag Innovation conference July 29 in Willmar

July 26, 2021

Understanding the future of farming after COVID is theme of Partners in Ag Innovation conference July 29 in Willmar
WILLMAR—Understanding the ag market after COVID-19 will be a topic for discussion during the third annual Partners in Ag Innovation seminar July 29 in Willmar. The theme for the event, which is scheduled from 7:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Thursday July 29, is “From Survive to Thrive.” The half-day seminar will be offered in a hybrid format that includes in-person attendance at the MinnWest Technology Campus in Willmar or an online option. The free event is sponsored by MinnWest and the Kandiyohi

Ziegler CAT opens new facility in Willmar

July 25, 2020

Ziegler CAT opens new facility in Willmar
WILLMAR—Ziegler CAT opened its new facility in Willmar on July 20, according to a Ziegler CAT news release. Located at 4600 Highway 71 S., the two-story facility features a retail showroom, a 25,000-square-foot shop, warehouses, offices, and a 7,800-square-foot cold-storage building. The shops include two bridge cranes, lube systems, a hose bench, and a wash bay. An on-site Cat solar array will provide clean, cost-effective, renewable electricity to the new facility. Read more at West Central Tribune

Ridgewater College and agriculture education partners receive $584,000 grant to train ag technicians

July 24, 2020

Ridgewater College and agriculture education partners receive $584,000 grant to train ag technicians
WILLMAR—Ridgewater College and agriculture partners received a $584,000 National Science Foundation grant to address a need for more agriculture technicians. The grant will fund the program Technical Applications in Agriculture which will educate and qualify high school students as agriculture technicians. “We have the second longest running precision agriculture program in the country, along with our newly created Agriculture Power and Equipment Technician program, so this partnership is a natural

Local interest in growing and processing hemp: EDC committee will conduct feasibility study for market options

November 21, 2018

Local interest in growing and processing hemp: EDC committee will conduct feasibility study for market options
WILLMAR— With the potential for high per-acre profits there’s increasing interest in growing industrial hemp on west central Minnesota farms. But with limited processing options available, an untested market chain and federal law that still classifies industrial hemp as a controlled substance, there are a few roadblocks yet to overcome. That’s why a feasibility study that could detail the financial risks and gains of growing, processing and marketing industrial hemp is expected to be

Workshop explores industrial hemp value chain

November 8, 2018

Workshop explores industrial hemp value chain
WILLMAR—In an effort to diversify their farming operation, the Hultgren family planted 40 acres of organic industrial hemp this year on their land in northern Kandiyohi County. After making adjustments on the combine to prevent the rope-like stems from wrapping around the equipment, the hemp seeds were harvested and cleaned in September. “I thought it went OK,” said Noah Hultgren, who farms with his brother, Nate, and parents Duane and Nancy Hultgren. With a history of planting corn,

Workshop: Talent & Technology for the Progressive Farm Manager

August 9, 2018

Workshop: Talent & Technology for the Progressive Farm Manager
This two-part workshop brought to you by the EDC’s Ag and Renewable Energy Development Committee to help our progressive farm managers grow smarter and stronger. This workshop features two dynamic sessions on talent and technology. SCHEDULE: 7:30 – 9:30AM | Attracting, retaining and managing your ag labor workforce. Plus, the latest changes to the employment regulatory environment. Speakers | Mike Henke, Mike Henke Inc. and Kristie Haefner, Firm Administrator & Lead HR Consultant

Cattlemen at heart: Creativity gives next generation of farmers a boost

July 21, 2018

Cattlemen at  heart: Creativity gives next generation of farmers a boost
WILLMAR—When he looks at the herd of 100 Angus cows and their frisky spring calves grazing in a pasture of belly-high grass, Cullen Fischer still can’t believe his lifelong dream of raising cattle is coming true. “It’s kind of a pinch-me thing,” said the 31-year-old from Lake Lillian about his good fortune of taking over ownership of the well-established cow-calf operation from a retired farmer he met just a few years ago—a man who will continue to be his mentor. “I

Home on the Minnesota prairie: Yaks thrive on the pastures of the Hot Disch Farm

July 3, 2018

Home on the Minnesota prairie: Yaks thrive on the pastures of the Hot Disch Farm
RAYMOND—If you’re craving a fresh yak steak and can’t make the trip to the Everest Steak House Restaurant in Kathmandu, Nepal, take a short ride over to Raymond. That’s where you’ll find the Hot Disch Farm, home to Shawn and Craig Dischinger and their assistants, sons Jack, age 5, and Peter, age 3. They’ll happily sell you ground yak, or yak roasts, steaks, brats and sticks. Their yaks thrive on the lush grasses of the Minnesota prairie, where the harshest of winter

Lettuce Abound Farms harvest first aeroponics crop

May 4, 2018

Lettuce Abound Farms harvest first aeroponics crop
NEW LONDON — With plates heaped high with at least five varieties of lettuce picked that morning at an aeroponics farm a couple miles away, restaurant owners and volunteers working to bring a food cooperative to New London were clearly enjoying their salads. They were also talking with the farm’s owners about getting the fresh greens on the menu and on the shelves.   “Absolutely,” said Leah Michaelis, owner of Lake Affect Coffee in New London, when asked if she would consider