Sustainable Since 1928 - Food Dialogues

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Sustainable Since 1928


Sustainable Since 1928

To third generation Minnesota farmer and U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) Board Member Gene Stoel, there is nothing more important than the legacy of leaving his land in better condition for his kids. The Stoel Farm was established in 1928 by his grandfather. Gene’s father began farming the land in 1951, purchasing it in 1962. Since 1990, Gene farms the 600 acres of corn and soybeans.

This Earth Day, the Stoel Farm will celebrate by planting corn. Planting season every Spring is a very busy time for farmers. Find out how Gene and his family are farming sustainably and continually improving their production practices to leave the land in better condition for the next generation.

How is your farm sustainable?
GS: We utilize technology so that we don’t overspray and over plant. I want to leave my land better for my kids, better than when I found it.  Every year we invest in our farm. We utilize technology so that we don’t overuse materials. Our tractors will not allow us to double plant or apply.

Why is water and habitat so important to you?
GS: Nothing grows without water, and in Minnesota we do not use irrigation. We rely on rain water so we must use it efficiently. I like to see the wildlife out there on the farm. I enjoy seeing the pheasants and the birds and how they interact with nature.

How are you continually improving?
GS: Every year we invest in our farm. We utilize technology that provides measures to ensure we don’t over spray or over plant. I am careful not to over use our materials and efficiently use our resources.

Why should consumers care about agriculture being sustainable?
GS: The good Lord only gave us so much earth. If the farmers are not sustainable we wouldn’t be able to produce our crops and continue to feed the consumers.

Why are you thankful for consumers?
GS: Consumers are our bosses. In an article with Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council, Gene shares that consumers’ needs and concerns play a large role in how farmers run their businesses. I encourage people who have questions or concerns about where the food they’re buying at the grocery store comes from to ask their grocers and contact the farmers who grow it.