New Forage Association to Host Kick-Off Meeting in January

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BROOKINGS, S.D. – South Dakota State University Extension is proud to announce that the newly formed Northern Plains Forage Association will hold its first formal meeting this month during the Sioux Falls Farm Show.

The Northern Plains Forage Association, a partnership of forage growers and industry partners like SDSU Extension, is planning its first formal meeting at 2:30 p.m. Jan. 26 at in the Sioux Falls Arena lobby. The meeting, which is sponsored by Tri-State Neighbor, will last one hour. It is free to attend, and open to anyone interested in learning more about the group.

Sara Bauder, SDSU Extension Forage Field Specialist, said this new association is open to forage growers, buyers, industry partners, and any interested forage industry stakeholders. The group goal is to create a forage networking and education community to promote quality, sustainable, profitable forage production in South Dakota and the region. She and event organizers hope to use the first meeting to further discuss the goals of the association, benefits of membership, and take suggestions from attendees.

“South Dakota is one of the top producing forage states in the nation, and this group will work toward further promoting and developing the forage industry in South Dakota and surrounding states,” Bauder said.

In addition to discussing the mechanics of the association, the group will host Patrick Jones of Jones Dairy near Spencer, Iowa, and Brent Van Middendorp with Animal Health & Management LLC. They will discuss the benefits and challenges of forage crop rotations that utilize cover crops.

“Cover crops are a hot topic in our industry and making sure elements of forages and soil health work together in a positive way is very important,” Bauder said. “We want to raise great quality forage profitably while respecting the land that allows us to do so.”

The board of directors hopes to provide forage stakeholders with educational opportunities such as field days and programs, as well as in-person and online networking events to keep forage growers and utilizers up-to-date on the latest research and best management practices.

No registration is required for the meeting, and entry to the Sioux Falls Farm show is free of charge.

For more information, contact Sara Bauder, SDSU Extension Forage Field Specialist and association coordinator, at 605-995-7378 or by email Sara.Bauder@sdstate.edu. You can also visit extension.sdstate.edu/events or the group’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/NPForage.

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