Greene Co. pork producers receive ‘Good Farm Neighbor Award’

Greene Co. pork producers receive ‘Good Farm Neighbor Award’

Posted Nov. 13, 2012


Protecting the environment and caring for their livestock and neighbors have earned a Grand Junction couple the “Gary Wergin Good Farm Neighbor Award” for October.

Bruce and Jenny Wessling received the award from Iowa Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Jay Johnson at their farm on Wednesday, Oct. 31.

The Wessling family raises hogs on its multi-generation farm, as well as corn and soybeans. They also provide facilities for their children and other young people to raise 4-H livestock on their farm. They have two children, Jolee and Taylor.

Neighbors Steve and Patty Fisher and Scott and Shiela Hebenstreit went together to nominate the Wesslings for the award. In their nomination, they cited the Wessling’s efforts to take care of the environment and the community as reasons they are deserving of this award.

“The Wesslings go above and beyond in taking care of the ground they farm,” they wrote. “They treat their rented farms like the land was their own.”

The Wesslings have been active in the Iowa Soybean Association’s On-Farm Network to aid research looking at crop nutrient uptake at different applications rates. They also have participated in the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers Green Farmstead Partner Program that promotes the planting of trees and vegetative buffers around livestock farms. They were the first livestock farm to participate in the program.

“Bruce and Jenny are willing and committed to give time to the community they live in,” the Fishers and Hebenstreits said in their nomination. “From their time spent helping 4-H youth with their livestock projects to raising money for improvements to the swimming pool in Grand Junction, Bruce and Jenny give back to their community.”

The Wesslings provide custom farm services for the Fishers and crop share the Hebenstreit’s farm.

The October ceremony was carried live on WHO Radio’s “The Big Show.”

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