MOORHEAD, Minn.—Alan Slater retired Thursday, Feb. 28, as director of Midwest Malting Barley Operations for Anheuser-Busch Companies, Inc. He's been with the company for 34 years. In his current role, Slater, 60, has run the Moorhead malt plant, visible along Interstate 94 with its big Budweiser sign. The plant itself has about 50 employees. Slater also has overseen country elevators that supply the malt plant in North Dakota from West Fargo, Sutton, and in Montana at Fairfield and Conrad.
PIERRE, S.D. — A new Ag in the Classroom program for South Dakota is taking off in its first year available in 102 of the 150 school districts in the state. Then Ground Works-Midwest, a non-profit headquarters in Sioux Falls, had developed a program to help teachers create classroom gardens, and then healthy eating for kids, and saw an opportunity for the Ag in the Classroom. A previous state ag in the classroom program had "died on the vine," about two years ago.
HOLABIRD, S.D.—Rodeo cowboys are known for toughness, so it would be no surprise that the Zilverberg family—all of them—take a typical South Dakota winter in stride.
MANSFIELD, S.D. — Calving came a bit earlier than planned, and right into the teeth of some of the coldest, snowiest conditions Michael Fischbach has seen. Fischbach, 45, farms with his wife Becky. They operate 2,800 ares, including alfalfa, corn, soybeans and wheat, and maintain 150 head of stock cows, which are in the midst of calving. In February, the cows "get all of the attention," he says, with a grin. Usually the Fischbachs aim to start calving about Jan. 20, with the first-calf heifers, and then start the more mature cows about three weeks later.
MINNEAPOLIS — The former general manager of the defunct Ashby (Minn.) Farmers Cooperative Elevator Co. pleaded guilty to federal felony charges of mail fraud and income tax evasion in U.S. District Court in Minneapolis on Thursday, Feb. 14.
FARGO, N.D. — A hearty crowd of more than 500 people attended the second annual Northern Corn and Soy Expo and trade show at the Fargodome on Feb. 12. Organizers said attendance felt the effects of slippery rural road conditions. Nancy Johnson, executive director of the North Dakota Soybean Growers Association, said more than 700 had pre-registered for the event which combined forces for the two crops. Sponsors and commercial exhibitors seemed to agree that the one-day concentrated event was a success. "Everybody's happy," she said.
MINNEAPOLIS — Jerome "Jerry" Hennessey, the former general manager of the Ashby (Minn.) Farmers Cooperative Elevator, is scheduled for a federal plea hearing on Valentine's Day. Hennessey, 56, is accused of stealing $5 million from the elevator over at least 15 years to fund his big game hunting exploits, among other things. He is scheduled to appear at 10 a.m. Feb. 14 before Chief Judge John Tunheim in Courtroom 15 in Minneapolis.
FARGO, N.D. — Mainstream agriculture thinks glyphosate is one of the safest, most effective and valuable herbicides on the planet. Critics see danger. One critic who makes part of his living testing for agricultural chemicals in food spoke at the annual Northern Plains Sustainable Agriculture Society annual meeting and conference in Fargo on Dec. 25 described glyphosate as a carcinogen and organics a "haven" to protect themselves.
LISBON, N.D. — Crop farmers produce feed grains, which go to livestock. If used regionally, that produces livestock which can feed into the crop production system. John Breker, a soil scientist with Agvise Laboratories in Northwood, N.D., talked about the value of manure as a nutrient and soil builder at a recent livestock summit at Lisbon, N.D., sponsored by the new North Dakota Livestock Alliance. Many of the attendees at the event either were either agricultural producers with livestock, or service providers—agronomists or livestock consultants.
FARGO, N.D. — The Northern Plains Sustainable Agriculture Society transplanted itself to the north for its 40th anniversary annual meeting and winter symposium. The event historically had been had been held in Aberdeen, S.D., but was moved to the Fargo Holiday Inn, allowing the group to expand commercial booths to 72. Les Miller, a small livestock farmer from Sioux Falls, S.D., the organization's chairman of the board, said the group had liked Aberdeen, but the Fargo location offered an ability to put everyone in one hotel, rather than scattered among three or four.