September 24, 2017

North Dakota Dairy Farmers Running Chicago Marathon Oct. 8 to Support Fuel Up to Play 60

Dairy farmers are no strangers to hard work, but Jennifer and Andrew Holle are proving the extent of their work ethic by adding long distance runs to their to-do list as they gear up for the Bank of America Chicago Marathon on Oct. 8, 2017. Sponsored by the Midwest Dairy Council, the Holles will join 25 other runners as part of a national Fuel Up to Play 60 team. Additionally, the couple has also been chosen by Midwest Dairy to be featured in a social media campaign that will allow the Holles to give followers an inside look at how they are not only preparing for the race, but also the ways in which they integrate health and wellness into their daily lives and encourage others to do the same.

Jennifer and Andrew Holle own and operate Northern Lights Dairy in Mandan, ND. The farm milks 600 cows, three times per day, in the only 36-stall rotary parlor in the state of North Dakota. Despite early morning chores, long days, and unpredictable schedules – they’ve found a way to make their health a priority. The Holles have been avid athletes for much of their lives, and have pushed to make fitness a family effort, oftentimes engaging their four children in mile-long runs to the mailbox and back, and encouraging the kids to be active in sports.

“Running and physical fitness have always been a family affair,” says Jennifer. “We cherish these bonding moments with our kids on our farm, and the kids know there’s always a nice cold glass of chocolate milk waiting at home to refuel after our runs.”

From homemade granola to garden-fresh berries, the Holles do everything they can to ensure their bodies are in tip-top shape for both running on pavement and running a farm. Refueling with chocolate milk also gives them essential nutrients for replenishing tired muscles.

Much like farm work, the Holles know that their health takes commitment every day, and this fall they look forward to seeing their persistence pay off as they encourage others to choose healthy habits of their own.

To learn more about the Holles’ journey to the marathon finish line and get an inside peek to life on a farm, visit, or follow along on social media with the hashtag #HolleMarathonHustle.


About Fuel Up to Play 60

Fuel Up to Play 60 is an in-school nutrition and physical activity program launched by National Football League (NFL) and National Dairy Council (NDC), founded by America’s dairy farmers, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The program encourages youth to consume nutrient-rich foods (low-fat and fat-free dairy, fruits, vegetables and whole grains) and achieve at least 60 minutes of physical activity every day. As a result of the program, 13 million students are making better food choices by selecting nutritious options like low-fat and fat-free dairy products, fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Additionally, 16 million students are getting more physically active during the school day as a result of the program.

Fuel Up to Play 60 is designed to engage and empower youth to take action for their own health by implementing long-term, positive changes for themselves and their schools. Customizable and non-prescriptive program components are grounded in research, including tools and resources, in-school promotional materials, a website and student contests. Visit to learn more.



USDA Designates Two Counties in South Dakota as Primary Natural Disaster Areas with Assistance to Producers in Nebraska

In response to a request from Jamie White, Farm Service Agency’s (FSA) acting State Executive Director in South Dakota, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated Douglas and Todd counties in South Dakota as primary natural disaster areas due to losses and damages caused by a recent drought.

Farmers and ranchers in Aurora, Bennett, Charles Mix, Davison, Hutchinson, Jackson, Mellette and Tripp counties in South Dakota also qualify for natural disaster assistance because their counties are contiguous.

Farmers and ranchers in Cherry and Keya Paha counties in Nebraska also qualify for natural disaster assistance because their counties are contiguous.

All counties listed above were designated natural disaster areas on Sept. 14, 2017, making all qualified farm operators in the designated areas eligible for FSA’s emergency (EM) loans, provided eligibility requirements are met. Farmers in eligible counties have eight months from the date of the declaration to apply for loans to help cover part of their actual losses. FSA will consider each loan application on its own merits, taking into account the extent of losses, security available and repayment ability. FSA has a variety of programs, in addition to the EM loan program, to help eligible farmers recover from adversity.

Other FSA programs that can provide assistance, but do not require a disaster declaration, include Operating and Farm Ownership Loans; the Emergency Conservation Program; Livestock Forage Disaster Program; Livestock Indemnity Program; Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program; and the Tree Assistance Program. Interested farmers may contact their local USDA service centers for further information on eligibility requirements and application procedures for these and other programs. Additional information is also available online at


Beef Board CEO Search is Underway

The Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion & Research Board (CBB) announces a national search to fill the position of Chief Executive Officer after accepting the resignation of current CEO Polly Ruhland in late August.

CBB’s primary function is to oversee and administrate the national beef checkoff through the management of programs that are proposed and carried out by various contractors. As part of the administration of the program, CBB oversees the collection of a mandatory assessment fee on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle and imported beef and beef products through a coordinated effort with qualified state beef councils.

CBB consists of 100 board members representing domestic beef, dairy and veal producers and importers of beef and beef products. A staff of nine employees conducts day-to-day operations.

Under the direction of the Board, the CEO manages all administrative and organizational affairs of CBB. The successful candidate will lead CBB operations, manage organizational strategy, financial and legal matters, and communications, as well as CBB’s relationships with the United States Department of Agriculture and beef community stakeholders.

The position is based in Centennial, Colorado, and the new CEO must reside in the Denver area.

Interested parties should click here to find a job description and additional information, or contact with inquiries. All discussions will be held strictly confidential.

Ruhland resigned in late August to accept the position of CEO at the United Soybean Board. The CBB Executive Committee subsequently tapped Chief Financial Officer Katherine Ayers as interim CEO, effective beginning Nov. 1, 2017.

Learn more about the Cattlemen’s Beef Board by visiting