Letter to the Editor: Investing in the future
Published 5:42 pm Friday, April 21, 2023
Family corn farms all over the state are waiting anxiously to begin planting this season’s crop. The vast majority of corn grown in the state is grown on family farms —and our family will soon be in the field.
We are also brushing up on the techniques and processes we learned in Nitrogen Smart, a course offered through the University of Minnesota Extension. Hundreds of corn farmers have taken and completed the course (eight hours of content!) to understand the best practices around nitrogen and fertilizer use. The program has helped us over the years understand how to best use fertilizer at the right time in the right amounts so that it is optimally used by the corn plant to minimize losses to the environment.
We also rely on the knowledge gained through other research that has been supported in part by my investment in the corn-check off, a voluntary tax from every bushel of corn sold in Minnesota. In addition to Nitrogen Smart, this investment has also supported numerous research projects throughout the state conducted both at University of Minnesota research stations and on family farms with the goal of improving nutrient use efficiency.
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So, if you see my family or another local farm family out in the field this spring, send along a good thought for a healthy crop, and know that we’re doing all we can to be sustainable, respectful, and efficient as we can for the land we tend.