Wapello County farm family is focused on the future of agriculture

07-02-2024 in Good Farm Neighbor

DES MOINES, Iowa (July 1, 2024) – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig presented the Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award to the Doug and Janet Brinegar Family of Wapello County today. The presentation was made during an event at the Wapello County Expo Grounds.

Brinegar Cattle Company is a diverse crop and livestock family farm located near Ottumwa. Operated by Doug and Janet, the operation also includes their sons CD and Wyatt. Their daughter Rachel, her husband, Mitch, and their four children, Cale, Grayson, Harper and Kynsley are not actively involved in the day-to-day farming operations but are proud supporters of the farm.

“Whether it’s their involvement and leadership in FFA and 4-H, their service to their school district, or their willingness to mentor other farmers, the Brinegar’s have demonstrated a clear focus of supporting the next generation of agriculture and the future of their community,” said Secretary Mike Naig. “They embody the spirit of a ‘Good Farm Neighbor’ as they are always ready to lend a helping hand while also being good caretakers of their land and livestock. I am pleased to present the Brinegar’s with the Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award.”

The family raises corn, soybeans and hay and also operates a custom harvest and silage chopping business. They own a cow-calf herd, feed cattle, including custom cattle feeding, and are BQA (Beef Quality Assurance) certified. The Brinegar’s use innovation through the Google Survey app to keep detailed calving records, feed records and health records. They utilize technology to assist with accounting and billing, all of which helps them easily connect with their cattle feeding customers.

They have a strong track record of deploying conservation practices to ensure that the farm can be productive for future generations. They utilize 100 percent rotational grazing and ensure a sustainable system by grazing cattle on cornstalks during winter months, only supplementing with hay when nutritionally needed. They have planted cover crops since 2015, with wheat being their preferred choice. They utilize minimum tillage, practice contour farming and have installed terraces on land more susceptible to erosion.

The Brinegar’s are active in their community and do much to support the next generation of agriculture and the community. They are involved in the Wapello County Farm Bureau, R-Calf USA, and the Iowa Stockgrowers Association. They are members of state FFA alumni boards, are lifetime FFA members and have served as 4-H leaders. Doug is a former board member of the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association and serves on the local school board.

The Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award is made possible through a partnership with the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers (CSIF), The Big Show on WHO Radio and the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship. Now in its 20th year, this award recognizes Iowa livestock farmers who take pride in caring for the environment and their livestock while also being good neighbors. It is named in memory of Gary Wergin, a long-time WHO Radio farm broadcaster who helped create the award.

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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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