Secretary Naig to Honor Martin Family with Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award
08-26-2022 in Good Farm Neighbor
DES MOINES, Iowa (Aug. 23, 2022) – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig will present the Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award to the Martin family, owners of Martin Family Farms, on Thursday, Aug. 25, in Springville at 11:00 a.m.
The family’s farm is based outside of Springville and run by Albert and Vicki Martin along with their children Preston, Paige and Parker. Albert’s parents have also played an important role on the farm since its establishment over 80 years ago. In addition to raising corn, soybeans, and alfalfa, the family has 30 head in their cow-calf operation and feed out about 70 steers. They market some of their meat directly to consumers.
“The Martin Family embodies what it means to be a good farm neighbor,” said Secretary Naig. “For five generations they have been dedicated to practicing high standards of animal care and environmental stewardship while also going the extra mile to make a difference in their community. I am proud to present this deserving family with this award.”
Animal care is a top priority for the Martins. They have implemented many innovative practices including working closely with their feed supplier on feed rations, maintaining a proper vaccination program in coordination with their herd veterinarian, and are continuously adapting best practices based on condition scoring. They pregnancy check their cattle to determine calving dates and hope to transition their cows indoors for their calving season.
In addition to their work to ensure high-quality animal care, the Martins have consistently emphasized the importance of conservation. The family has incorporated no till, strip till and minimum till practices on most of their row crop acres and were early adopters of the use of cover crops. They also split their application of nitrogen, use tile drainage and have waterways that they mow for hay.
Outside of their work on the farm, the Martins understand the importance of agricultural education and being involved in their community. Albert and Vicki have hosted presentations at local schools with tractors and other farm equipment. Working with their kids, they have also taken bottle bucket calves to local schools for youth presentations and school groups have visited the farm for field trips. Within the larger community, Albert has served as the Linn County Fair Board President for four years and the Vice President of the Springville Community School District School Board for three years. Vicki is involved in Faith Formation at their church and is a co-chair of the swine community group.
The Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award is made possible by the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers. This award recognizes Iowa livestock farmers who take pride in caring for the environment, 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.
About the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship
Led by Secretary Mike Naig, the Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship serves the rural and urban residents that call Iowa home. Through its 14 diverse bureaus, the Department ensures animal health, food safety and consumer protection. It also promotes conservation efforts to preserve our land and enhance water quality for the next generation. Learn more at iowaagriculture.gov.
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