Equipping farmers to build resilient farms and communities.
The 2019 Cooperators' Program Report is now available online. Read the results on trials across the agricultural spectrum. From interseeding 60-inch corn, to cabbage variety trials, to the effects of apple cider vinegar in dairy cattle, you'll find informative overviews about on-farm research designed and conducted by PFI farmers in 2019.
Save the date: Join us in January for our annual conference

We're hard at work planning a meaningful, practical conference based on your feedback and interests. This conference, you'll be able to participate from the comfort of your home. Mark your calendar for Jan. 21-23, 2021, and watch for more details to come from us soon.

  • Jan. 21, 22 and 23

  • Location: Your House!

  • Stay tuned: more information coming soon!
NCRS has made $4 million in cost-share available through the Environmental Quality Incentives Program (EQIP).

This money will go towards eligible farmers in 42 counties across Iowa. NRCS will be accepting applications for the EQIP Derecho Special Sign-up now through Oct. 2, 2020.

While diversifying a crop rotation with a small-grain crop can provide a myriad of benefits, it can also feel like a risky endeavor.

Crop insurance policies are widely available for corn and soybeans across the Midwest, but what about for oats, rye and the rest of the small grains?
Testing varieties in PFI's Cooperators' Program
Variety trials can help both row crop and vegetable farmers make more informed choices about varieties that work best in their farming systems. Learn about two trials PFI farmers conducted this past year:

  • Rye variety trials: Farmers screened nine cereal rye varieties at three locations in 2020, testing for different characteristics. With the compiled information in this report, farmers in Iowa can decide which cereal rye variety will best meet their production goals.

  • One-cut lettuce trials: Vegetable farmers Jordan Scheibel and Jon Yagla compared Salanova lettuce varieties with Eazyleaf varieties for mini-heads and salad mix. They were particularly interested in seeing how these varieties performed during the hot summer months.
Keeping their farm in the family is important to Steve and Crystal Riggins, as is having a plan to improve soil health and create a sound farming business they can pass on to the next generation. Steve and Crystal will graduate from SIP this fall.

"The Savings Incentive Program has given our family the tools and resources needed to build a business. The program keeps us accountable, helping us to reach our goals.

"Through SIP we have made connections with established, progressive farmers. These connections have created mentorships and friendships, something I did not expect when we started." - Steve Riggins

Applications for the Savings Incentive Program are now open. See how SIP works and apply to be part of the Class of 2022.
A new role for staff member Liz Kolbe
For the past seven years, Liz Kolbe has served as PFI's horticulture and habitat programs manager. In that role, she crafted programming for our specialty crop farmers and helped deepen our understanding of their needs.

This month, Liz will transition to a new role as our education and engagement director.

She will oversee strategy and operations for PFI’s educational events, outreach and community and farmer engagement.

Join us in congratulating Liz on her new role!
Ever wonder how some farmers make cover crops pay?

Becca Clay, PFI’s strategic initiatives agronomy coordinator, shares results from a partial budget analysis of cover crop costs and revenues among cost-share participants.

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Check out our full slate of 2020 field days. Details and registration are now available.

Missed a virtual field day that you wanted to attend? There are a few ways to watch recordings:

Hosted by: Emma & Marcus Johnson
Sept. 22 | 12:30-1:05 p.m.

Hosted by: Peter Seely & Sam Hitchcock Tilton
Sept. 25 | 12:30-1:10 p.m.
Sept. 22: Virtual Field Day - Testing Apple Varieties
12:30-1:05 p.m. | Online
Sept. 25: Virtual Field Day - Mechanical Weed Control
12:30-1:10 p.m. | Online
Members in the News
Bonnie Beard of Decorah was featured in Dairy Star: Women In Dairy: Bonnie Beard

Martha McFarland of Fredericksburg was featured in Country Folks: Raising and selling bison
PFI in the News
Practical Farmers of Iowa was mentioned in a news release on PR Newswire: Cargill to advance regenerative agriculture practices across 10 million acres of North American farmland by 2030

PFI was mentioned in the Osceola Sentinel-Tribune: Corn field day
Have you been featured in the media? Tell us when and where to find a link to the article, and we'll feature you in a future issue of Practical News.