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Published November 19, 2010, 12:00 AM

North Dakota farmers give back to communities

ST. LOUIS – North Dakota farmers have until Dec. 31 to enroll in America’s Farmers Grow Communities, a program made possible by the Monsanto Fund.

ST. LOUIS – North Dakota farmers have until Dec. 31 to enroll in America’s Farmers Grow Communities, a program made possible by the Monsanto Fund.

The program allows farmers to give back to those organizations that they value most with the opportunity to direct $2,500 to their favorite local nonprofit organization, such as the local FFA chapter, library, fire department or elementary school.

Nearly $1.2 million has already been donated in 10 states through two pilot programs, according to a release from the Monsanto Fund.

Youth agricultural programs such as 4-H and FFA were common recipients, receiving more than $432,000 in donations. Another roughly $430,000 was contributed to improvements in community emergency services, community groups and health care initiatives.

Aside from the local organization selected to win the $2,500 benefitting, the local United Way chapters will receive a $1 donation from the Monsanto Fund with each farmer signed up.

Farmers can apply online at www.growcommunities.com or by calling (877) 267-3332. Farmers, age 21 and over, who are actively engaged in farming a minimum of 250 acres of corn, soybeans and/or cotton, or 40 acres of open field vegetables, or at least 10 acres of tomatoes, peppers and/or cucumbers grown in protected culture, are eligible.

The program is open to qualifying farmers, and no purchase is necessary in order to enter or win. In North Dakota, one winner will be drawn from each of the state’s 30 participating counties. Monsanto Fund will announce winning farmers and recipient organizations in February.

Eligible North Dakota counties are Barnes, Benson, Burleigh, Cass, Cavalier, Dickey, Eddy, Emmons, Foster, Grand Forks, Griggs, La Moure, Logan, McHenry, McIntosh, Morton, Nelson, Pembina, Pierce, Ramsey, Ransom, Richland, Sargent, Sheridan, Steele, Stutsman, Towner, Traill, Walsh and Wells.

Visit www.growcommunities.com to sign up and to learn more about the America’s Farmers Grow Communities program.

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