AgweekTV Full Show: Building collapse, oat marketing group, Mikkel Pates' retrospective

This week on AgweekTV, we meet a farmer who had a close call with a building collapse. A small group of farmers join up to market their oats. And we look back at Mikkel Pates' career in journalism.

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This week on AgweekTV, we meet a farmer who had a close call with a building collapse. A small group of farmers find strength in numbers when it comes to marketing their oats. And this month marks the end of Mikkel Pates' long career in ag journalism. We take a look back at some of his most memorable moments.

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Welcome to AgweekTV
as we kick off our ninth season.
I'm Emily Beal.

A North Dakota farmer
narrowly escaped
a collapsing building
in a December storm.
Mike Clemens was literally
blown away when it equipment
shed collapsed on his farm
near Wimbledon, North Dakota.
Mikkel Pates talked with him
about his close call.

You know, the day that snow
came, it just came over
these trees over there,
just came over the top


This 20 year old building
was no match for a two day storm
in mid-December with heavy snow
and relentless winds.

What a perfect storm
straight east to end
with snow coming in.
It landed right on top of this
building here.

Mike Clemens had been clearing
snow that day
when he went into his equipment
building to get his sunglasses
out of a tractor inside.
Let's let him tell us
what happened next.

I was coming out, reached over
to grab the door here
to shut the door.
And I heard a piece of metal
fall on the floor
and I'm going now, what the heck
could that possibly be?

I better go see what it is.
So I just as
I walked through the building,

00:01:37:01 - 00:01:39:34
the roof was coming down
and all of a suddenthe gust of wind
come blowing out the door.
I was hanging on to this door
and the door was out here
and I ended up back out here
in the snow bank.
It was just unbelievable, the
the force of the air
coming out of the building,
you know.
And then I got up and I came a
look not going well.
That didn't really work out
so well.

Mike is well known
in the ag community.
For decades
he's been one of the state's
most active farm leaders
serving on numerous
commodity organization
and business boards.
He and his family grow corn and
soybeans on their 7000 acres,
and some of the equipment
they use on it
may have saved his life.

If those weren't in here.
I would have definitely been
in more danger.
But, you know,
that was kind of the support
of the building at that point,
and it was the equipment
inside there.


And his first thought
once he knew he was safe.

Well, I got to take pictures.
Yeah, well,
when you have a disaster,
you got to take pictures.

This farm has weathered
a lot of storms
over the decades, but this one
may be one for the books. Near
Wimbledon, North Dakota, this
is make updates for AG Week.

The Clemens
will replace the building
which was insured, including
a snow peril provision.

The North Dakota House
is considering a bill that would
prohibit foreign governments
from buying agricultural land in
the state.
The bill comes after many state
lawmakers voiced concerns
about the food fund wet corn
milling plant
proposed to be built in
Grand Forks.
The 1135 bill was sponsored
by Representative Larry Kleman
after he heard concerns
about food banks ties to China.

He believes that locating
a business controlled
by the Chinese government
so close to Grand Forks
Air Force Base is a poor idea.
The Committee on
Foreign Investment
in the United States completed
its review on Food
Song in December, determining
that the project does
not fall under its jurisdiction.
If the bill is passed,
it would not affect land owned
prior to by foreign governments
July 1st, 2023.

AG Secretary Tom Vilsack
has announced a new round
of emergency relief and
pandemic assistance programs.
He shared information
about the latest phases
of the USDA programs earlier
this month
at the American Farm Bureau
Federation's annual convention.
Vilsack says the USDA's goal
is to provide all farmers,
including underserved
and new producers,
with the opportunity
to receive the help
they need to continue farming
and to build and maintain
their competitive edge
and access to more in new
and better markets.
Applications for both programs
will be open
January 23rd through June 23rd.

What started out
as some southeast Minnesota
farmers getting together
to talk about conservation
practices has evolved
into a marketing group
for Food Grade Oats.


Jeff Beach talks
about what they hope to achieve
and this week's AG Week
cover story.

Martin Larsen and a small group of
farmers would get together
a few times a year
to talk about soil conservation.
The discussions were usually
about no till and cover crops.

Some of the farmers were growing
oats as a cover crop
to improve their soil
and feed cattle.
But Larsen and others
in the group started talking
about growing food grade oats.

I used to say when we were
a corn and soybean farm,
but now it's corn,
soybeans and food grade oats.
Three crop rotation.

The Oats acreage among
the group is still pretty small,
perhaps 2000 acres this year.
A dozen farmers
share resources like equipment.

They're growing enough votes
to help supply a processing
plant in the region, needing
food grade oats,aggregating the crop
among several growers
helps ensure higher quality
overall and better prices.
But this actually gives some
assurance and quite a lot of it
that you're still going
to have something of value
that can be brought up
to a standard, high standard
that can be marketed
in the food grade market.

And that's the game changer
part of working as a group.

Although production is fairly
small now, they have big goals.

A million bushels
in 5 to 10 years.
Recreating history
from 100 years ago
and cooperative elevators
started. Yoakum Wiersma is a small grain
specialist at the University of Minnesota.
He says a small group with a
niche crop faces big challenges.

Because initially you're going
to have smaller acreage.
And so that lacking
that infrastructure
to have fair price
discovery and have,
you know, move that
risk away from the grower
to into the market
is really important.

A nonprofit organization
is helping
with some marketing
infrastructure and equipment.
It has provided
funding for a key
piece of equipment,
a grain cleaner,
to help them meet
the standard of food grade oats.

They also lined up
the use of a grain handling
facility for blending oats
and centralized shipping.

Because remember, it's
all new for everyone.
And it really there is
strength in numbers
and safety in numbers.

When you're working together
as a group.

This is Jeff Beach for AG Week.

You can read more in the
next AG Week magazine
or at

The food we eat and the way it's
produced is much different
than it was 100 years ago
or even 20 years ago.
But how might it change
in the coming years
as we continue our special
series on the future of Food?
An expert lays out some possible
things to come find out.

Jason Lusk is head of the Agricultural
Economics Department
at Purdue University in Indiana.
He also co-written
several books on the topic.
He predicts
many changes in the next decade,
including advances
in biotechnology.
Not only does he predict food
will be more sustainably grown,
but that that will be reflected
on the labels as well as along
with nutrition information.

More of those kinds of labels
that are more quantitative
with regard to other impacts,
whether it's carbon emissions,
water use, land use.
I kind of like that view
of the world because I think it
incentivizes us
to focus on the things
that matter.

A recent Purdue consumer study
shows people across the country
most value
for a bit affordability
and the taste of buying food,
followed by availability,
environmental impact
and social responsibility.

Up next on Adweek TV.
Demand remains
high for high quality beef,
despite some
challenges for producers.

It's been a volatile couple of
years for the cattle industry,
but the demand for high quality
beef continues
to be on the rise.
Troy Marshall,
director of commercial industry
relations for the American Angus
Association, says ranchers
have had to face some hectic
weather patterns and events,
record high input prices
and other roadblocks
while caring for their herds.

We have historically
tight supplies
with historically strong demand.
We've never seen a demand
for high quality beef up or two
thirds of Troy so prime
that we've seen here now.
And so
I think it's really exciting
time for the cattle industry.

US meat exports have also been
facing some challenges,
according to Dean Meyer here for
the US Meat Export Federation.
COVID, transportation issues,
inflation and the slumping
international market
have all impacted U.S.
meat exports.

We've got great
opportunity in the beef exports.
The demand is going
to stay there with markets.
Asia just emerging from COVID.
Some still zero-covid policy,
but yet
we're able to sell that product.
We got food service.
It's opening up again.
There's great opportunity.
The challenge will be our supply

Meyer stated
that beef exports are expected
to increase by 20% in value
this year.

A Wisconsin buying company
has grown into the world's
biggest processor
and exporter of kidney beans.
Chippewa Valley Bean Company
was founded in Menominee
in 1972 by Vice
President Charles Wachsmuth.

Today, three generations
of the family work there.
At first they processed only
the beans they grew themselves,
but over time they bought on other growers
around the upper Midwest.
Throughout the 1980s,
they served
mainly domestic markets,
but then started
breaking into overseas markets.
Today, they export beans to 30
countries on five continents.
They take in kidney
beans from about 100 farmers
clean and process them
and ship them out for canning.
Walks says innovation
is what helped them grow.

What might
make us a little different
is our set up on
electronic color sorters,
and we do use a machine
called a crab neck
or a pin sorter.
And that's a large cylinder with
tens of thousands
of needles in it
that really work well
for sprouts and skin checks.

Wachsmuth says that's important
because kidney beans
are a specialty crop
that must have the skin intact
to maintain their value.
He says like many companies,
they face
logistic problems
and high fuel prices.
But he says
they're always looking for ways
to bring more value
to their customers.
The company is on track
to be carbon
neutral in the next few years.

Ahead on AgweekTV this month
brings an end to Mikkel
Pates long reporting career.
To look back
on some memorable stories.

The agri weather outlook is
sponsored by Excalibur Fungicide
from Vaillant, USA.

When temperatures rise
as the region heads

00:10:47:53 - 00:10:50:43
into the heart of January,
here's our AgriWeather outlook.

00:10:51:50 - 00:10:52:44
For much of the month

00:10:52:44 - 00:10:54:46
of January,
most of the stormy weather,

00:10:54:46 - 00:10:56:20
most of the stormy weather in

00:10:56:20 - 00:10:58:27
the United States
has been in California

00:10:58:27 - 00:11:00:15
and most of us
out here in the Midwest,

00:11:00:15 - 00:11:01:51
Great Plains,
it's been fairly quiet.

00:11:01:51 - 00:11:04:02
There are signs of a new pattern

00:11:04:14 - 00:11:07:25
This pattern change will likely
gravitate toward a little bit

00:11:07:25 - 00:11:10:48
colder weather into especially
the far northern plains

00:11:11:03 - 00:11:13:48
and some parts of the Great
Lakes and northeast,

00:11:13:48 - 00:11:16:06
which have been very, very mild
this winter.

00:11:16:21 - 00:11:18:18
It does look like
many areas of the Midwest

00:11:18:18 - 00:11:20:16
are looking at snow,
especially toward the

00:11:20:16 - 00:11:23:00
second week, toward the latter
part of January into February.

00:11:23:16 - 00:11:26:30
And the main storm track
is going to be poised to change

00:11:26:30 - 00:11:28:44
where the really wet
weather has been.

00:11:28:54 - 00:11:31:43
In other words, one more week
this first week of the forecast

00:11:31:52 - 00:11:33:26
will bring rain to California.

00:11:33:26 - 00:11:34:34
The second week, late

00:11:34:34 - 00:11:36:47
January will bring relief
to the West Coast

00:11:37:00 - 00:11:38:03
and it will put that storm

00:11:38:03 - 00:11:40:03
track back into the middle
part of the country.

00:11:40:18 - 00:11:41:26
So let me show you
what's going on.

00:11:41:26 - 00:11:44:44
Jet stream pattern right now,
quite meandering and generally

00:11:44:44 - 00:11:46:51
speaking, there's
not a lot of really arctic

00:11:46:51 - 00:11:48:57
air anywhere
in the United States.

00:11:48:57 - 00:11:50:51
Even Alaska has really not been

00:11:50:51 - 00:11:52:51
that much of a cold winter.

00:11:52:51 - 00:11:54:16
There's kind of cold weather

00:11:54:16 - 00:11:56:50
is finally moved
into the northeast,

00:11:56:50 - 00:11:58:58
but we're just not seeing that
frigid weather

00:11:58:58 - 00:12:01:13
except for that
period of time back a little

00:12:01:13 - 00:12:04:09
before Christmas
that has mostly been in retreat.

00:12:04:20 - 00:12:07:45
Now, there will be a little bit
of a low pressure

00:12:07:54 - 00:12:10:23
trough forming down here
in the southern states

00:12:10:23 - 00:12:12:07
that will bring cooler
weather south.

00:12:12:07 - 00:12:15:13
But it's not attaching itself
to the really cold weather

00:12:15:13 - 00:12:15:57
this week.

00:12:15:57 - 00:12:18:23
Now, as we get toward
the end of the period,

00:12:18:32 - 00:12:21:18
a big storm system
will start building out here.

00:12:21:18 - 00:12:24:39
You'll see the weather
in California begin to dry out.

00:12:24:52 - 00:12:27:37
And this will eventually drop
into the last week

00:12:27:37 - 00:12:30:15
of the forecast
drop down along the West Coast.

00:12:30:24 - 00:12:33:31
More of an inland storm
and then likely kick out

00:12:33:31 - 00:12:36:31
into the plains
and the southwest and northeast.

00:12:36:35 - 00:12:39:53
Track for next week
could be potentially quite wet.

00:12:39:54 - 00:12:41:24
Gulf moisture coming in.

00:12:41:24 - 00:12:43:53
The colder weather coming down
doesn't look like as cold

00:12:43:53 - 00:12:45:59
as it was in late January.

00:12:45:59 - 00:12:48:14
Does not look like as cold
as it was back

00:12:48:14 - 00:12:50:29
in the mid to late December.

00:12:50:29 - 00:12:51:52
But it does look like
we'll see some

00:12:51:52 - 00:12:53:54
pretty cold weather
by the end of the month.

00:12:53:54 - 00:12:55:19
And there are signs
that at least

00:12:55:19 - 00:12:58:11
some of February may be quite
cold as well.

00:12:58:18 - 00:13:00:57
Now, as far as the storm
track goes this week,

00:13:00:57 - 00:13:03:59
we're still seeing very wet
weather along the West Coast.

00:13:04:00 - 00:13:06:47
California in particular, turns
into excessive snowfall

00:13:07:03 - 00:13:09:22
in the California
mountains, the Sierras,

00:13:09:33 - 00:13:11:46
and you're getting some
pretty appreciable snow

00:13:11:58 - 00:13:14:40
into the Rocky Mountains
as well.

00:13:14:53 - 00:13:17:45
There will likely be one
weather system later in the week

00:13:17:45 - 00:13:20:04
that will come out
of the southern states, bringing

00:13:20:04 - 00:13:23:41
some rain pretty far north
into the Midwest.

00:13:23:50 - 00:13:25:33
And that will likely
turn to snow.

00:13:25:33 - 00:13:28:02
There may be some of this back
into the Great Plains,

00:13:28:11 - 00:13:29:46
northern Plains in particular,

00:13:29:46 - 00:13:31:38
probably not really,
really heavy snow.

00:13:31:38 - 00:13:33:06
The second week, though,

00:13:33:06 - 00:13:35:33
this storm track
will likely be more manifested

00:13:35:33 - 00:13:38:05
and there will be potential
for snow somewhere

00:13:38:14 - 00:13:41:10
in the western edge of the Great
Lakes or the northern plains.

00:13:41:19 - 00:13:43:50
Showers, thundershowers
further south in New England

00:13:44:04 - 00:13:46:06
and the northeast
will finally get some snow

00:13:46:23 - 00:13:49:44
and coastal California will
finally get a chance to dry up.

00:13:51:21 - 00:13:53:13
marks the start of a new year.
But for us, it also means
we say goodbye to Mikkel Pates
as he's retiring
at the end of the month.
Rose Dunn talk with him
about some of his most
memorable stories.

is bringing some big changes
for us here at AG Week
TV and AG Week magazine.
We're going to say goodbye
to Mikkel Pates after a long
and very stellar career
in journalism. Quickly.
You went to SDSU for ag

I graduated in 1979
and I went to the Worthington
Daily Globe.
It was an interesting time
in agriculture.
There were still a lot of go go.
Seventies kind of thinking.
Everybody were
they were trying to grow
as much as far as they could
and have plant fence, road
a fence row.
But that was soon
going to take another turn.

And then through the eighties,
of course,
a lot of coverage of the farm

Yes. The you know,
there have been tractor kids
to Washington in 78 and 79.

And I
had done some coverage of that.
But there was tractor
kids in North Dakota
out in Jamestown, and there were
big farmers going broke and
going through bankruptcy.
And so I would cover these
bankruptcy cases
and also about that time,
Sarah Vogel was suing
the Farmer's Home Administration
and actually had a foreclosure
moratorium for several years
until the 87 Farm Credit Act.
And that was
something I covered at the forum
as well.

The Jerusalem artichoke story
that was kind of the first big
ag journalism and investigative
journalism that came together.
And it's what kind of got
you noticed by the forum, right?

This was a company
in Marshall and Lind,
Minnesota area that had South
Dakota connections.
Ethanol was being
talked about
as being something on farms.
So ever
every farm was going to have
an ethanol still,
and this was a way
to get into a new crop
that was sort of a miracle crop.
That's how they marketed it.
Where you invest in this
and buy seed,
it was really a pyramid scheme
and not a miracle.

00:16:05:30 - 00:16:06:20
No, it wasn't.

And in fact,
they'd never made anything
like ethanol out of Jerusalem,
Eventually, they got indicted by
the Minnesota attorney general
and a couple of them
went to jail.

So during that time,
you are a reporter,
ag reporter for the farm.
And then in 2000
you joined AGweek magazine.

The Herald created
AG Week in 1984,
and I tried to compete
with AG Week, which had a lot of
ag journalists, and
I applied for an opening there.
And they it was great
that they hired
hired me for that.

And it's been
an interesting career at a week.

00:16:45:25 - 00:16:48:05
So many great stories to share
after more than 40 years
in ag journalism,
We're going to hear more
from Mikkel,
including about his AG TV career
coming up in future weeks.

Still ahead, the community
and the company.
And say goodbye to Mikkel.

As we told you earlier
in the show, Mikkel Pates
is retiring after 44 years
in ad journalism.

00:17:11:23 - 00:17:13:42
More than 20 of them here
at Agweek.

00:17:13:42 - 00:17:15:58
This week, Mikkel was recognized
with the retire
It Party at the Forum,
which owns Agweek.Many friends and colleagues,
as well as some of the giants
of local agriculture,
turned out to wish
Mikkel well.

He has the ability
and the talent
to take those complex issues
and break them down to
that people can understand.
I think that is by far
his strongest suit.

The one thing
that stands out to me
when I think of
Mikkel is integrity.
You could always trust Michael
to do everything he could
to get the story right.
Mikkel will be very much missed.

Best of luck, Mikkel.
you’ll only see on
and in agweek magazine
this week.
Stockman’s Livestock
Exchange changes hands.
And after ten years
ground for Northern Plains
a proposed fertilizer plant in
Grand Forks
still hasn't been broken.

Thanks for watching the debut
show of our ninth
season of AgweekTV.
Remember to check us out daily
on Facebook,
Twitter, Instagram, and TikTok.
to Keep up on all your ag news.
Have a great week.

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