January Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award to be presented to Ottumwa family

01-19-2012 in Good Farm Neighbor

West Des Moines, Iowa – January 19, 2012 – The Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers (CSIF) commends the Ryan and Lana Reed family of Wapello County for their outstanding efforts as neighbors. Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey will present the award to the Reed family at the “Winter Pork Picnic” during the Iowa Pork Congress in Des Moines on Wednesday, January 26.

“Iowa farm families go to great lengths every day to provide the best possible care for their animals and the environment, while still being good neighbors and active community members,” CSIF Executive Director Brian Waddingham said. “This award is a great way to recognize farmers like the Reeds who represent who we would all like to have as a neighbor.”

The “Big Show,” which airs on both WHO and WMT radio, will broadcast live from the presentation from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

The Wergin Good Farm Neighbor award, made possible through the financial support of CSIF, recognizes Iowa livestock farmers who take pride in doing things right. This includes caring for the environment and their livestock and being good neighbors. It is named in memory of Gary Wergin, a long-time WHO Radio farm broadcaster who helped create the award.

The full release from the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship is below:

REED FAMILY FROM WAPELLO COUNTY NAMED THE JANUARY WERGIN GOOD FARM NEIGHBOR AWARD WINNER

Family to be recognized on January 25 during the Iowa Pork Congress in Des Moines

Contact: Dustin Vande Hoef, 515/281-3375 or 515/326-1616 (cell)

DES MOINES – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey today announced that the Ryan and Lana Reed Family, who live north of Ottumwa in Wapello County, are the winners of the January “Gary Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award.” Northey will present the award to the Reed family at the “Winter Pork Picnic” during the Iowa Pork Congress in Des Moines on Wednesday, January 25.

The “Winter Pork Picnic” is at Capital Square, 400 Locust St., in downtown Des Moines from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m. on January 25th. A free pork lunch is available to all during the picnic courtesy of the Pork Producers. WHO Radio’s Big Show will broadcast live during the lunch.

“It is exciting to be able to recognize a young family like the Reeds that not only take great care of their livestock, but also go above and beyond to care for their neighbors and reach out to the community,” Northey said. “The Good Farm Neighbor Award was created to recognize families like this that are an example of the great livestock farmers we have in this state.”

The Reed Family have a 4,800-head tunnel ventilated pork facility on their home farm and have additional production at another site. Ryan and Lana have three children, Conner, Kylee Jo, and Colt Ryan.

The Reed’s neighbors Gary and Debbie Hollingsworth nominated them for the award. In their nomination they say, “We have been lifelong friends and neighbors of Ryan’s family and it is great to see him and his young family succeeding in livestock agriculture.”

The Hollingsworth’s went on to praise the Reed’s efforts to care for the environment and communicate with their neighbors and the community.

Their nomination said, “When the Reeds first approached us about building their barn in 2007 the very first thing we discussed was trees. The Reed Family Farm aesthetics are second to none. They have coordinated with the Coalition to Support Iowa Farmers, Trees Forever and the Iowa Nursery Landscape Association’s Green Farmstead Partner Program to plant an astounding 1,200 tree buffer around their facility to limit odor and particulate matter and provide a home to wildlife.”

The Reed family also hosts an annual Fourth of July picnic each year for area residents to visit the farm, learn about pork production and ask any questions. “This shows the Reed’s strong commitment to neighbor relations and communications,” the Hollingsworth’s said.

The Reeds were also name 2011 Iowa Pork Industry Environmental Steward Award recipients.

The Wergin Good Farm Neighbor award, made possible through the financial support of The Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers, recognizes Iowa livestock farmers who take pride in doing things right. This includes caring for the environment and their livestock and being good neighbors. It is named in memory of Gary Wergin, a long-time WHO Radio farm broadcaster who helped create the award.

Anyone interested in nominating their neighbor for the award should write a letter or e-mail explaining why their neighbor should receive this designation. Applications may be submitted to the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship, Attn: Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award, Henry A. Wallace Building, Des Moines, IA 50319 or emailed to Communications@iowaAgriculture.gov.

Northey, a corn and soybean farmer from Spirit Lake, is serving his second term as Secretary of Agriculture. His priorities as Secretary of Agriculture are promoting the use of science and new technologies to better care for our air, soil and water, and reaching out to all Iowans to tell the story of Iowa agriculture.

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