Unmanned aerial vehicles could have a big role in agriculture’s future. That both intrigues and concerns aerial ag applicators.
Thanks to a rare combination of strong crop prices and generally good yields, the past few years have been kind to most Upper Midwest farmers. Aerial ag applicators have fared well, too.
States track agricultural aviation in different ways, and comparable statistics aren’t available for North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Montana.
But officials in the four states provide these numbers:
It’s early afternoon on a picture-postcard day in late May, a rarity in a wet, drizzly spring. Tim “Toby” McPherson is anxious to climb into his spray plane and take advantage of the perfect conditions.
The Census of Agriculture shows, for the most part, farms are becoming bigger and fewer. But the census also shows farms still vary in size: Small ones are growing in number and those of modest size continue to play a huge role.
Agweek kicks off a series profiling small farms operated by people whose main sources of income are off-farm jobs.
For two decades, Strom of Hill River Farm was a ranch without cattle. But Mark Strom, a fifth-generation rancher, brought them back.
“Animals, livestock — whether it’s a dog or cat — I pretty much have a passion for it,” he says.
You might find Peter Welte in a field near Aneta, N.D. He’ll be wearing jeans and sitting on a tractor.
Or you might find him in the Grand Forks (N.D.) County Courthouse. He’ll be wearing a suit and tie.
It’s mid-afternoon in early May, and Dave Olson, manager of the McIntosh (Minn.) location of the Fosston (Minn.) Tri-Co-op grain elevator, can count on one hand the patrons who have come into his business on this gray, drizzly day.
Interest in gluten-free foods is growing, and a North Dakota-based organization is proposing to test 108 early maturing sorghum lines that potentially could fare well in the state.
The North Dakota Corn Growers Association is working to bring a first-of-its-kind research facility to North Dakota State University in Fargo.