What inspires farmers and why is their job so important? Josh Boersen explains:
Why did you want to be a farmer?
I grew up on a farm. I loved the equipment and seeing our hard work come to a head at harvest time.
What crops do you grow?
We grow wheat, soybeans, small edible beans and corn.
What impact do pests and disease have on your crops?
Pests and disease have always presented a challenge. Quality and yield are usually the two biggest factors that cause us issues. From spider mites to western bean cutworm, we have many challenges with pests. Some, like western bean cutworm, are new to our area and cause a large amount of damage. White mold and fusarium are also prevalent diseases causing significant damage. There are others but these cause the most damage on average. Physical damage to grain or the presence of mycotoxins affect most grains, however, with the edible beans it can also significantly affect grade.
In general, how important is it to have access to crop protection products?
Given the amount of pest issues we have experienced in the last 5 years, and expect to have in the years to come, being able to implement control measures when necessary is going to be crucial. We won’t always use chemical control; in fact, it is usually a last resort if possible. It is a tool in our toolbox, and the more tools we have the more flexible we can be.
Why is your profession important in the challenge to feed the world?
I believe that all people involved in the food production system are going to be vital to a healthy, sustainable world. We are a small part of this process and we aim to do the best job we can. Our aim to provide a healthy, safe product for all of our consumers. We do this while being mindful of our practices to leave a healthier environment than the one we were given.
What inspires you about your job?
I love working with new technologies to improve our processes, and working with industry partners to develop new tools and techniques, to help others do the same. I have a passion for analytics and really enjoy improving our operation wherever we can.