• Mindy Ward

    Should I let livestock die?

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on February 20, 2015

    An early morning barn check revealed new lambs at Showtime Farms. In the frigid temperatures, we arrived just in time. Two little ewe lambs were weak but standing next to their mom. A quick look around the barn revealed a third lamb, not moving, lying in the corner. Her nose was ice cold. Her jaw locked. There was no reaction to touch. She appeared for all accounts lifeless. Then there it was--a flicker of hope, a movement in her chest. I scooped her up and ran to the house. It was the…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Keep Missouri Farming, For Food's Sake

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on July 30, 2014

    I recently sat through a technology fair at the University of Missouri-Columbia where Dr. Bill Wiebold, professor of plant sciences was explaining the pending Federal Aviation Administration regulations of unmanned aerial vehicles, like remote controlled helicopters, when used for agriculture purposes. "There are personal freedoms when we do something for recreation," he said. "But as soon as it becomes a business people expect some regulation. It's frustrating, but that is…

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  • Mindy Ward

    2 Reasons Why Farmers Should Watch ‘Farmland’

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on April 29, 2014

    Roughly 200 people filled auditorium seats at the Danforth Center in St. Louis for a private screening of the new documentary film ‘Farmland.’ There were agriculture industry executives, ag commodity group leaders, farmers, consumers and children. As the lights dimmed, you could feel the anticipation mounting. Would this film tell the story of American agriculture? ‘Farmland’ is opening May 1 in theatres across the country. The documentary shows just how the food we eat…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Blogging Through Brazil: Exportese

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on March 29, 2014

    U.S. farmers can now truly understand the road a single seed takes from being planted in a field in Mato Grosso to ending up in the belly of a cargo ship at the Guaruja port on the western coast. The last stop on the Rabo AgriFinance Brazil Tour took American farmers to the TEG-Louis Dreyfus & Cargill Terminal in the Santo Amaro island. And as we had seen across the countryside this week, there were trucks lined up to deliver grain. Some traveled more than 1,250 miles of rough terrain to…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Blogging Through Brazil: Wacky Weather

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on March 28, 2014

    It is raining in Brazil. The wet weather dampened the Rabo AgriFinance Brazil Tour plans to visit the Chapada dos Guimaraes National Park for a 3-hour walking tour. But just as in the U.S., weather in Brazil can change plans and production. For Brazil farmers this year’s weather with its combination of drought and precipitation are taking a toll on yields. Right now, the country’s soybean harvest is in its final stretch. According to the farmers we visited, the soybean crop will…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Blogging Though Brazil: Extreme Farm

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on March 27, 2014

    Farmers on the Rabo AgriFinance Brazil Tour farm got a look at how Brazil’s farmers diversify to remain competitive and profitable. Gilberto Goellner raises seed, grain, beans, timber and cattle throughout Brazil. We visited just two of his locations in Mato Grosso. And the size of his operation is impressive in any country. Here is a rundown of his farm by the numbers: •59,280 acres of soybeans •11,856 acres of cotton •14,326 acres of corn •17,290 acres of…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Blogging Through Brazil: Seed Production

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on March 26, 2014

    After the cold winter in the U.S., it was good to see farmers smiling while perusing lush green fields of soybeans, corn and pearl millet, even if it wasn’t their own. Tuesday’s travels with Rabo AgriFinance Brazil Tour took farmers from the upper Midwest to seed production operations in Brazil. Located in the Petrovina hill area, known as one of Brazil’s best grain crop growing areas due to its altitude and constant climate conditions, is Adriana Seed Company. The company…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Blogging Through Brazil: Holy Rough Roads!

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on March 25, 2014

    We heard the story. We saw the photographs. But really, nothing can prepare you for traversing the Brazilian countryside. Rather than a relaxing drive taking in the scenery, I felt more like a bobblehead doll in the front seat. Earlier in the morning Andy Duff, executive manager of research for Rabobank Brazil, explained that the roads in rural areas of Brazil were of “poor quality.” By evening, the U.S. farmers and ranchers from the Midwest experienced first-hand just how…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Animal Activists, Leave My Kid Alone

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on February 28, 2014

    Yes, I monitor my daughter’s Facebook account. And today, I am not pleased at the level animal activists, more specifically the vegan community, will go to cajole young teens into their lifestyle. As I scroll through her newsfeed, I run across one of those “Like this page” requests. Its icon is a cute little cartoon pig. Its Facebook page name is “SaveFarmAnimals.” Its category is education. So, I click through. What I find is a page that has a photo of a kitten…

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  • Mindy Ward

    Local Food Fight

    Show-Me Life

     by Mindy Ward
     on July 31, 2013

    Where does your food come from? Well just pick up any local grocery flyer and you may see a familiar face. But now I am confused. Which farmer raises the best product? Which store should I choose? Like many other consumers, I scour the local grocery advertisements to see what is on sale this week. Recently, I have been put in a quandary. Two large grocery store chains are using photos of farm families alongside their produce. I know their individual name, farm name, hometown and state…

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