MN Agriculture: The Guentzel Family Farms
Day 29 of my “30 Days of MN Agriculture” is the Guentzel Family Farms from Mankato, MN. The Guentzel’s are sixth generation farmers and strive to continue the family farm tradition. In addition, they also realize the importance of community involvement. Jon and Angela are both involved in the Minnesota Farm Bureau.
Social Media Sites:
Facebook: Guentzel Family Farms
Youtube: Guentzel Family Farms – Video 1
Youtube: Guentzel Family Farms – Video 2
Tell me a little about your farm and/or business?
“At Guentzel Family Farms we are very lucky to be able to work so closely with family. My dad Terry, my brother Jon, and myself all work full time on the farm. My mom Mary and sister-in-law Sarah also help out when needed. We are very proud and humbled by the fact that Guentzel Family Farms is a 6th generation family farm. Our base of operations is still within 3 miles of where our great great great grandparents settled nearly 150 years ago. We are still farming some of the same soil our ancestors worked over 100 years ago.
Our goal is to continue to grow in a sustainable fashion while preserving family tradition. With today’s global demands we are asked to do more with less. To meet these demands we utilize the best equipment, farming practices, and modern technology. We strive to maintain the values, work ethic, and nostalgia of a 6th generation family farm while doing so.”
How long have you farmed or been in business?
“My dad grew up farming with his family and has continued to grow the farm. Jon and I were raised on the farm along with our two sisters. Jon continued to work on the farm after high school and has done so since. He has really excelled in taking on a management role and keeping up with technological advancements. I took the long track back to the farm. This includes living and working in Denver, St. Cloud, and the Twin Cities. I now realize the farm where I feel most at home.”
Tell me a little about what you grown/raise/produce or service provided.
“We are a row crop operation that focuses primarily on corn and soybean production.”
Where do you sell or provide services to? Who is your end consumer?
“Most of our corn goes to Ethanol plants in the area and our soybeans go to local processing plants.”
What makes your farm/business unique or special? What are you proud of?
“At the farm we take pride in our community involvement. We are part of Minnesota Farm Bureau. Jon is the current county president and Angela serves on the board. Through Farm Bureau we opened up the farm to the community, served a free breakfast, and answered any questions that people had. We hosted over 850 people that day! We are involved with Greater Mankato Growth and have held a farm tour to Mankato’s Young Professionals Group. Last year we opened up the farm to a tour group of agri-professionals from Brazil.”
“Our intent is to promote agriculture while informing the public what it means to be a farmer in modern times. Just because farms don’t look like “Grandpa’s farm” anymore doesn’t mean that they are a factory farms. We are progressive farmers, we use the latest in farm technology and equipment, and we care about being stewards to the land.”
What is a most embarrassing moment you have had on the farm?
“The rogue chicken incident! Last year during harvest one of our chickens managed to hitch a ride with me in the suspension of the semi to the field. You can imagine my surprise when I got out of the truck and found one of our chickens supervising me. You can also imagine the amusement I provided for the combine and grain cart operators watching me chase the chicken around! Even after setting up barriers and “traps” I was still being outsmarted by a chicken. Finally, after tracking down a chicken catching tool and army crawling underneath the service truck I successfully snuck up and caught him!”
What do you love most about farming/business?
Angela: “Farming offers so much variance. In one day I might find myself as an accountant in the office, a welder the shop, and machine operator in the field.
I care about upholding my family’s legacy. Being that Jon and I are the 6th generation, we value maintaining a solid foundation for generations to build upon.
As a woman in the field (pun intended), I love that I can break the stereotype of what it looks like to be a farmer.”
Terry: “The variety of jobs; every two weeks you are doing something different. When it’s cold, you get to park your equipment and work in the shop. When it’s nice out and the days are longer I get to work outside and enjoy the day. I find working with retired farmers that appreciate what we do very rewarding.”
Read others featured in my “30 Days of MN Ag. ”
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