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Ask A Farmer/Farm Family

What is a Family Farm?

Answer: About 96% of all farms in the U.S. are family-owned and operated. Some farms have been farmed by generations of family members and are incorporated for business purposes. I’m sure you’ve seen it driving down the road. Miles and miles of corn and soybeans stretching endlessly across the horizon. Some ...read more

What Affects Could Meat Substitutes Have on Cattle Farms?

Answer: Switching to plant-based meat substitutes will have an impact on cattle farms with a disruption in beef production. It also confuses consumers who may not realize the trade-offs. As I look back on the topics covered over the past several years, this one has to be the most complicated and ...read more

How do you keep your cows warm and comfortable in the winter?

Answer: We provide buildings that protect our cows from harsh winter temperatures and drafts, along with clean, dry stalls and bedding. We also give them good quality feed with enough extra energy in their diet to withstand the cold weather. As I write this, the leaves have fallen and it’s snowing. ...read more

Will this year’s cover crops be utilized by beef cattle?

Answer: Cover crops can be harvested for livestock feed. On our prevent plant acres we grew sorghum-sudan grass (instead of field corn) and will be chopping it and feeding it to our cattle. Many acres in DeKalb County and surrounding counties were not planted to the usual field corn or soybean crops ...read more

Are you worried about your pigs getting African Swine Fever?

Answer: African Swine Fever is a disease that originated in Africa and now has infected pigs in China. With protocols in place here, it is my hope that it doesn’t reach the United States. African Swine Fever (ASF) is a swine disease virus that has been around for decades. First in ...read more

What does hormone-free pork really mean?

Answer: All animals have natural occurring hormones. So there’s no such thing as hormone-free pork. Also, no supplemental growth hormones are given to pigs. I was driving around the country and I came across a sign advertising pork for sale, more specifically, “hormone-free pork.” I have seen similar advertising in small ...read more

How are cattle farmers educated and trained?

Q: How are cattle farmers educated and trained on animal practices, food safety and quality? A: I am certified through the Beef Quality Assurance program, with principles of best management practices and safe operating procedures designed to meet U.S. food production standards. Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) is an education program for farmers ...read more