RIDGEWAY, Minn. — A Winona County farmer has been appointed to the Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council.
Glen Groth, who farms in Pleasant Hill Township, will serve as the District 9 representative on the elected board which oversees the investments of the state’s checkoff dollars. His term will run until 2022, and replaces the position of the late Rob Hanks, who died in December.
“No one can fill Rob’s shoes, but Glen brings his own unique farming experience and expertise to the council, and we’re glad to welcome him aboard," Cole Trebesch, chairman of the board, said in a press release.
Groth and his wife, Melinda, farm corn, soybeans, hay and dairy heifers in the unincorporated community of Ridgeway, in southeastern Minnesota's Winona County. They switched up their operation about a year ago to focus more on crops, but Groth said they "still have fingertips" in the dairy industry.
Melinda Groth started farming with her parents after spending eight years as researcher at Mayo Clinic, and around the same time she met Glen.
"My wife and I pretty much run the show now," said Glen Groth, whose retired dad also helps on the farm.
The family farms land in the "rolling bluff country" of Winona County, which presents unique challenges but is also very scenic, Groth said.
With a background in dairy and having transitioned to an operation focused more on crops, Groth said he's excited what learning opportunities the board will bring him.
"I'm looking forward to learning more about the industry I'm in and all the dynamics of the industry affecting the prices we get," he said.
Groth said that trade and expanding export markets will be one of his primary focuses while serving on the council.
“That’s something I feel strongly about, maintaining and establishing relations with our overseas trading partners and working to grow those markets,” said Groth.
Also a member of the Minnesota Soybean Growers Association, Minnesota Corn Growers Association, and president of the Winona County Farm Bureau, Groth sees importance in representing the industry he's in.
"Somebody needs to do it," said Groth of his involvement in ag organizations. "A lot of times there's people thinking they can speak on behalf of farmers, and sometimes present information that is not entirely accurate."
According to the press release announcing his appointing, Groth has "extensive experience talking with local, state and international media outlets, from his area newspaper to German Public Radio."
“I look for those opportunities to dispel myths and address concerns the public may have," Groth said.
He said he's dedicated to presenting information that represents the majority of the farming community and not just the slice he's a part of. When this term ends in 2022, Groth said he hopes to run again.