CLC Hosts Agricultural Field Day
Community members, local supporters and Central Lakes College faculty spent an afternoon out at the farm. The organizers gave tours of the different research projects currently underway on the grounds. Protecting ground water was a main topic of discussion today as the large group gathered.
“I love to see people take ownership of their food system for some it is as a consumer and understanding where that food comes from. Others are obviously producing and they want to improve their operation. Then, of course, there is that whole gambit in between,” said Keith Olander, CLC Dean of Agricultural Studies.
No matter how you are involved, agriculture affects everybody. CLC wants to make sure that students get the opportunity to try real agricultural equipment.
“Well, I love agriculture, and you can’t really get that anywhere else. There is a whole bunch of programs all across the state that has a little bit to do with agriculture. But agriculture in a sense is only taught on the farm,” said CLC student Kathryn Barrett.
The education reaches farther than just those that are enrolled at Central Lakes College.
“It’s good to get out in the community and show people that aren’t traditionally involved in agricultural equipment. The ride drives plant a seed in kids that says this is something I want to pursue and get involved with the industry. Going forward, it is critical that we get more people involved in agriculture and get a better understanding of what puts the food on the plate,” said Branden Halvorson, Location Manager at Midwest Machinery.
Many local organizations support the work at CLC, but their efforts go far beyond local impact.
“There is some really phenomenal work going on that sometimes it will generate interest or benefit for others that are right around us. But there is a regional impact and even a state impact when we think about it. Our soils here represent about 600,000 acres across the state of Minnesota that we consider more sandy or core sandy and irrigated. Our research can be applied to a lot of different areas of the state,” Olander said.
Technology, research and most importantly food are all growing at CLC’s agricultural campus.