Search is on for Century Farms

CenturyFarm MFA 3489If your farm has been in your family since Dec. 31, 1919, you can apply to have it recognized as a Missouri Century Farm.

To qualify, farms must have been owned by the same family for 100 consecutive years. The line of ownership from the original settler or buyer may be through children, grandchil­dren, siblings and nephews or nieces, including marriage or adoption. The farm must be at least 40 acres of the original land acquisition and make a financial contribution to overall farm income.

The program is administered by the University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources and MU Extension along with Missouri Farm Bureau.

“Family farms have been among our most vital partners since the founding of Extension more than 100 years ago,” said David Burton, county engagement specialist with Uni­versity of Missouri Extension. “The Century Farm program is one way we express our gratitude to those who have contributed so much to Missouri agriculture.”

Applicants certified as owners of a 2019 Missouri Century Farm will be recognized by the local MU Extension center in the county where the farm is located. Appli­cants are presented with a sign and a certificate.

Since Missouri began the pro­gram in 1976, more than 8,300 century farms have been recognized.

The Missouri Century Farm program is now taking appli­cations, which must be postmarked by May 15. Details and a downloadable application form are available at

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Keeping it local

Food, beverage and forest product manufacturing in the state of Missouri could soon be a more than $70 billion industry.

A new study found significant potential for transforming Missouri agriculture commodities into value-added products by processing locally. This study was the first step in the Show-Me- State Food, Beverage and Forest Product Manufacturing Initiative, a project of the Missouri Agricultural Foundation. TEConomy Partners, a firm specializing in research, analysis and strategy for innovation-based economic development, conducted the study.

TEConomy proposed three initiatives to grow Missouri food, beverage and forest product manufacturing:

  • Regional Food Systems Initiative, which would deliver compre­hensive, in-depth business development, product development, and supply-chain services to start-up, small- and medium-sized food-processing and manufacturing companies.
  • Foods for Health Initiative, which would develop Missouri as a leading center in the research, development, testing and production of foods linked to healthful benefits.
  • Enhanced Commodity Utilization Initiative, which would add value to Missouri’s major commodities, including livestock, soybean, corn, dairy and eggs.

TEConomy anticipates significant economic benefits if the stra­tegic initiatives are successfully implemented. The impact on Mis­souri’s economy by 2027 is projected to expand total value-added ag/food manufacturing economic activity to more than $71 billion. That is an increase of more than $25 billion beyond projected growth compared with 2017. Successful implementation would also create and support nearly 70,000 new jobs; produce addition­al annual sales and local tax revenue of more than $1 billion and increase agricultural commodity production sales by approximately $1 billion annually to meet new value-added uses.

The next step is to create a statewide task force and convene working groups around each of the three initiatives proposed in the study. The task force will deliver specific recommendations in the next 12 months.

The inaugural guiding coalition for this collaborative initiative involved Dan Cassidy, chief administrative officer of Missouri Farm Bureau; Chris Chinn, director of the Missouri Department of Ag­riculture; Christopher Daubert, vice chancellor for agriculture and dean of the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resourc­es; Sen. Brian Munzlinger; and Gary Wheeler, CEO of the Missouri Soybean Association and Merchandising Council.

The study was funded with a grant from the Missouri Val­ue-Added Grant Program through the Missouri Agricultural & Small Business Development Authority. MFA Incorporated also provided support along with the CAFNR Foundation, Law Firm of Haden & Haden, Missouri Beef Industry Council, Missouri Cattle­men’s Association, Missouri Corn Growers Association, Missouri Department of Agriculture, Missouri Egg Council, Missouri Farm Bureau, Missouri Pork Association, Missouri Soybean Association, Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council, University of Missouri College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources and USDA Rural Development.

The full report is available on the Missouri Agricultural Founda­tion website:

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Today’s Farmer takes ‘Chairman’s Prize’

MFA wins 14 awards in NCFC Information Fair

Today’s Farmer magazine was awarded one of the top two prizes in the 2018 National Council of Farmer Cooperatives (NCFC) Information Fair, the competitive communications contest staged by the Washington, D.C.-based organization of America’s farmer-owned, farmer-controlled businesses.

MFA’s membership magazine was honored with the “Chairman’s Prize,” given to the entry that best illustrates the underlying themes of NCFC’s “Farmer Co-ops: Providing for America” campaign. Judges commented that Today’s Farmer provides “overall strong presentation of issues and interest and urgency to co-op members. The cover and table of contents clearly signal to readers what’s inside/what’s to come. Good writing and use of illustrative elements throughout.”

The prestigious prize was among 14 awards—including five first places—earned by MFA in this year’s NCFC contest. The annual contest draws hundreds of entries fromArt member cooperatives such as CHS, Land O’Lakes, Blue Diamond Growers and GROWMARK. Winners were announced at NCFC’s annual meeting Feb. 13-15 in Scottsdale, Ariz.

On its way to winning the Chairman’s Prize, Today’s Farmer took first place in the category of Membership Magazine, under $15,000 per issue. Today’s Farmer editor Allison Jenkins won first place in columns for “Want to believe in something? Try agriculture,” while photojournalist Kerri Lotven took first place for “Birds of a Feather” (below right) well as two honorable mentions in the photography category.

Rounding out MFA’s first-place honors was an MFA Crop Insurance advertisement designed by art director Craig Weiland and intern Madison Byrd and the MFA Corn and Soybean Seed Guide, also designed by Weiland. The MFA Forage Guide was named second place in the Advertising Catalog or Product Guide category, and Weiland earned an honorable mention for “Break Free,” an advertisement for new Exceltra and Suprema horse feeds.

Jenkins also took home two honorable mentions for news stories: “An emerging threat,” which reported on the discovery of extended-diapause rootworm, and “Season of Extremes,” coverage of the summer drought.

In the social media competition, MFA Incorporated’s Facebook page tied for third place with Land O’Lakes’ Facebook page, and the PowerCalf Mobile social media campaign also tied for third with Alabama Farmers Cooperative. MFA’s efforts are managed by social media specialist Chelsea Peters.

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About Today's Farmer magazine

Today's Farmer is published 9 times annually. Printed issues arrive monthly except combined issues for June/July, August/September and December/January. Subscriptions are available only in the United States.

If you would like to begin or renew a print subscription, CLICK HERE and go to our shop. We are proud to offer the subscription for only $15 per year.

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