Carolyn Lange / Forum News Service
WILLMAR, Minn. — Congressman Collin Peterson has some dire predictions for agriculture. During a talk Tuesday, July 2, in Willmar with members of the National Federation of Independent Business, Peterson said land prices will fall, crop prices will not go up significantly and there will be farm bankruptcies in the next year that could rival the ag crisis of the 1980s. “Nobody knows for sure how bad it’s going to be … but it’s not going to be good,” said Peterson, D-Minn., who is chairman of the U.S.
BELLINGHAM, Minn. — The fate of a Dutchman who's owned and operated a dairy farm in western Minnesota since 2001 may be in the hands of Congress. A bill has been introduced that could help Kor Mulder and his sons become permanent U.S. residents so they can continue farming in Minnesota. On Wednesday Mulder met with staff from the offices of Sen. Amy Klobuchar and Rep. Collin Peterson.
ROSEN, Minn. — Kor Mulder was on the phone talking to a TV news reporter from his homeland in the Netherlands when yet another reporter walked into the kitchen of his farm home. Earlier in the day, he had been talking to a reporter from New York who was going to make the trek to Mulder’s 350-head dairy farm that’s perched on the wide-open spaces of western Lac qui Parle County in western Minnesota. A Twin Cities TV station had already been there twice and Mulder was struggling to schedule all the new requests for interviews between his milking chores.
WILLMAR, Minn. — Wes Nelson has spent his entire career helping farmers maneuver through the ever-changing — and always complicated — federal farm programs administered at county offices of the federal Farm Service Agency.
WILLMAR — After five years of low commodity prices, Minnesota farmers may feel like they've been through a grinder. "It's not only grinding on people's finances but it's also emotionally very, very tough," said David Kohl, a farm economist who spoke Wednesday in Willmar to a crowd of about 225 farmers, Ridgewater College ag students and farm lenders. "It's a grinder type of cycle," Kohl said.
NEW LONDON, Minn. — What had been a large, empty pole barn on a farm in rural New London last year is now becoming a climate-controlled maze of computer-operated, high-powered lights and a water misting system housed on a dozen massive stainless steel frames. By early spring, the building will be filled with lush, fresh lettuce and other leafy greens.
WILLMAR, Minn. — Concerned that a recent decision by the Kandiyohi County Board of Commissioners could have a negative effect on animal agriculture if similar action is taken in the future, a committee has begun planning a forum to increase awareness of the impact zoning issues can have on the ag economy. "Inaction by this committee is not an option," said Dan Tepfer, chairman of the Agriculture and Renewable Energy Committee.
St. MARTIN, Minn. – A barn fire early Thursday morning near St. Martin killed about 6,000 turkeys. According to the Stearns County Sheriff’s Office, the fire was reported at 1:21 a.m. at St. Martin Farm Inc. in the 28000 block of County Road 12. By the time emergency crews arrived a 1,000-foot barn was engulfed in flames. One section was totally destroyed but the other half of the barn sustained minimal damage.
WILLMAR, Minn. — Too much rain and muddy fields are slowing down harvest this fall in west central Minnesota. Usually by this time, soybean harvest is nearly done and corn harvest is well underway. But soybean harvest is just getting started and harvesting corn for grain is a long ways off for most. "We are slower than normal because we've had so much rain this fall," said Liz Ludwig, Farm Service Agency director for Chippewa and Yellow Medicine counties.
WILLMAR, Minn. — The National Weather Service in Chanhassen has confirmed that a series of five tornadoes swept across west-central Minnesota last week, damaging several farm sites and small-town businesses, and uprooting trees. All of the tornadoes were ranked as EF-1, with winds that ranged from 88 mph to 100 mph. The storm started brewing just before midnight on Sept. 19 in Chippewa County, where a short-lived tornado with winds of 88 mph traveled about 2 miles across the south side of Montevideo, according to the weather service report.